Contact Wounds

In contact wounds, the muzzle of the weapon is held against the surface of the body at the time of discharge. Contact wounds may be hard, loose, angled, or incomplete (a variation of angled).

Hard-Contact Wounds. In hard-contact wounds, the muzzle of the weapon is jammed "hard" against the skin, indenting it, so that the skin envelops the muzzle. In hard contact wounds, the immediate edges of the entrance are seared by the hot gases of combustion and blackened by the soot (Figure 4.1). This soot is embedded in the seared skin and cannot be completely removed either by washing or by vigorous scrubbing of the wound.

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