Volume 29, Issue 2 (April 1984)
Atypical Gunshot Wounds of Entrance: An Empirical Study
Atypical gunshot wounds of entrance occur when bullets deviate from their stable nose-on trajectory before entering the body. When this occurs, the resulting wound may have an atypical D-shaped appearance. Ray-like abrasions or bruises may radiate from the corners of the wound. Unstable nonaxial flight may be caused by intermediate targets, ricochets, inappropriate weapon/ammunition combinations, poor weapon construction, or use of misaligned silencers. If a bullet is deformed before entrance the configuration of the resulting wound may be bizarre, and the wound configuration may closely resemble the configuration of the striking bullet. Nine cases are presented showing the effects of various intermediate targets. A number of methods for the investigation of atypical wounds are discussed.