Weapons Murder Law Presentation + Quiz ~ 83 Slides ~ Guns Knives Blunt Force
Below are excerpts from the presentation. The presentation covers just about every murder weapon. It is highly visual with accompanying text throughout. Actual cases, crime scenes, forensic testing and verdicts are also included. There is also a 20 point multiple choice quiz at the end with an answer key.

I am a retired lawyer, instructor and textbook writer.

~Guns are listed as the Number 1 murder weapon in America by the FBI. Tables of its statistics are at the end of this presentation.
~Handguns lead followed distantly by shotguns and then rifles.
~Guns leave important evidence potentially and cases against the accused can be made or lost based on the gun and its ammunition as evidence, along with expert witness testimony.
~Sometimes the gun is never found which will hinder the investigation. If the gun is found, then many expert forensic tests can be performed.

Technicians not only collect bullets but an area around and containing the bullet is cut out so that the bullet can be removed carefully at the lab. For example, the bullet is embedded in furniture or carpet.

Gunpowder residue: Burning powder particles expectorate and create a pattern on objects closest to the barrel. This pattern varies by how far the weapon is from the target.

Trajectory, ricochet and bullet holes: if many holes are found at a crime scene, sticks are inserted into bullet holes. These indicate direction of the bullet and can triangulate where the shooter was standing, his height and other details. Ricocheting bullets collect trace evidence from where they bounce, which can be collected and analyzed.

Evidence Regarding Knives
~DNA Analysis of any DNA bodily substance on knife, most likely blood
~fingerprint analysis of the knife and matching the prints
~blood spatter analysis to investigate how the crime occurred
~expert witness used to testify that wounds caused by a knife and what type of knife caused them and how they occurred.
~knife injuries which were self inflicted are also subject to expert witness testimony.
~tracing knife purchases and linking them to accused is possible but there is no database or registry for buying knives. They do not have serial numbers.
~although expert witness will probably be able to identify knife as the type of knife used, unless there is DNA or fingerprints on the knife, that will be the extent of the ID.
~there is a lot of blood in stabbings. A lot of this blood will hit the accused’s clothing. The victim’s blood on the accused’s recovered clothing is damaging evidence.
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Created: Oct 10, 2016

Updated: Feb 22, 2018

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