(Received 13 July 1990; accepted 7 August 1990)
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The interpretation of the range of fire of gunshot wounds requires coordination of information and observations from the autopsy surgeon, scene investigator, and laboratory analyst. Opinions based on incomplete information often lead to misinterpretation of the wound. The effects of interposed targets such as clothing, windows, and body parts are discussed. Case examples are given for interposed targets that cause confusing patterns and even lead to misidentification of the points of entrance and exit of the projectile in the body. The splitting of tissue in areas of bony prominence can be mistaken for evidence of discharge of a firearm at close range.
Professor of forensic sciences and pathology, Institute of Forensic Sciences, Dallas, TX
Chief, Physical Evidence Section, Institute of Forensic Sciences, Dallas, TX
Stock #: JFS13083J