Defensive Handgun Training Drills

Spec Ops Shooting

Spec Ops Shooting Thrive on the Rabid Gun Shooting Market is a book that aims at transforming you into a better combatant when holding a gun in the battlefield. The book contains three battle-proven strategies that will work your way in the hour of need, helping you conquer the enemy you face with ease. It is a product of Brian Morris and contains a number of secrets to gunfights. The program covers three main techniques that will help maintain brain focus and avoid panicking, something that can get you killed with ease. The initial strategy was developed by Israeli and is meant imparts you skills that aid one's sharpness in mind along with body movements that will enhance your speed and a mastery of the manner in which things will turn out to be. The author was a Green Beret who served for nearly three decades in such a deadly unit. It goes without saying that his work will significantly benefit you. You will get all the necessary details about what you need to know. Considering the world we live in, life can change any minute. You need to be ready to face whatever comes your way. This program will help you do just that. Read more...

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Defensive Handgun Training Drills Book

This program has been authored by Mike Seeklander. He is a professional firearms instructor. He is also a former united state Marine, federal air Marshall, police office and federal firearms instructor. He has done quite a remarkable job of taking complex processes, breaking them down to more understandable training drills. His book is about the drills you should follow during a firearm training for you to successfully acquire the necessary skills in defensive shooting. With this guide, shooters can use the drills outlined in it to create a program of their own. With his years of training and former work profession, he is undoubtedly the guy to trust when it comes to handgun training drills. The book entails the drills to follow for both dry and live fire. You will also get to gain the confidence to defend your life when the need arises. The guide comprises of 11 dry fire drills and 13 live fire drills. The product can be acquired in two ways; Digital e-books, Personal delivery kindle book. The full program is highly recommended for those who wish to excel in this kind of sport. Due to the nature of its' seriousness, the product is only limited to adults and not children for security reasons. Read more...

Defensive Handgun Training Drills Book Summary

Contents: Ebook
Author: Mike Seeklander
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New Forms of Handgun Ammunition

Up to the mid 1960s, commercial handgun bullet design had not changed since the early 1900s. Handgun bullets were either full metal-jacketed or all lead. Lead bullets were roundnose or, less commonly, wadcutter or semi-wadcutter. Recovery of a full metal-jacketed bullet meant that the individual had been shot with an automatic pistol an all-lead bullet of medium or large caliber indicated a revolver a small lead bullet a .22. Soon after their introduction, hollow-point handgun bullets became the center of controversy. Many civil libertarian groups protested that they were Dum-Dum bullets, violated the Geneva Convention, and caused severe and more lethal wounds. All these statements are incorrect. The Dum-Dum bullet was in fact a .303 centerfire rifle cartridge loaded with a soft-point style bullet manufactured at the British Arsenal at Dum-Dum, India, in the late nineteenth century. Silvertip Handgun Ammunition. Produced by Winchester, this ammunition is loaded with hollow-point...

Reaction Response Times in Handgun Shootings

Tobin and Fackler measured the minimum time needed for police Officers to fire, on signal, a drawn handgun, pointed at a target.29 The tests were performed with both the trigger finger on the trigger as well as outside the trigger guard (the recommended way by many police agencies to hold a gun). The mean time from signal to firing the handgun was 0.365 seconds with the finger on the trigger and 0.677 seconds with the trigger finger outside the trigger guard. Volunteers were then videotaped as they turned their torsos 180 degrees as rapidly as possible. The mean time to turn the torso 90 degrees was 0.310 seconds while to turn 180 degrees it was 0.676 seconds. Thus, Tobin and Fackler concluded that if an individual was facing a shooter, it was possible for the individual to turn their torso and end up facing away from the shooter in the time from when the shooter decides to fire and the gun discharges.

Wounds Due to Handguns

Handguns are the most commonly used form of firearm in both homicides and suicides in the United States. Handguns are low-velocity, low-energy weapons having muzzle velocities generally below 1400 ft sec. Advertised velocities of revolver cartridges traditionally have not been accurate because they are obtained in test devices that have no cylinder gap. Even in well-made revolvers, this gap will cause a velocity loss of approximately 100 to 200 ft sec, depending on initial velocities and pressure as well as the construction tolerances of the weapon. Advertised velocities for semiautomatic pistols are more accurate as there is no cylinder gap from which gas can escape. The length of the barrel also influences muzzle velocity. The longer the barrel, the greater the velocity. Table 5.1 gives the advertised muzzle velocities of some .22-caliber and .38 Special ammunition compared to the actual velocities determined in revolvers with 2-, 4-, and 6-in. barrels. The velocity of .22-caliber...

Handgun Shot Cartridges

Handgun cartridges loaded with lead shotare availableinvariouscalibers, e.g., .22 Long Rifle, .38 .357. This ammunition, often called birdshot or snakeshot, is used to kill small game usuallyvarmints orsnakesat close range. The rimfire versions of these cartridges have been discussed in Chapter 6. Blount (CCI) manufactures centerfire handgun shot cartridges in

Suicides Due to Handguns

The location of the self-inflicted wound varies depending on the type of the weapon, the sex of the victim, and whether the victim is right- or left-handed. In individuals who shoot themselves with handguns, the most common sites for the entrance wound are the head (81 ), the chest (17 ), and the abdomen (2 ), in that order (Table 14.1). There is some difference by sex (Table 14.1) in that a smaller percentage of women (72 ) shoot themselves in the head than do men (83.5 ). Table 14.1 Sites of Suicidal Handgun Wounds Table 14.1 Sites of Suicidal Handgun Wounds When individuals shoot themselves, they do not necessarily hold the weapon the same way they would if they were firing the weapon at a target. Commonly, they will hold a handgun with the fingers wrapped around the back of the butt, using the thumb to depress the trigger, firing the weapon (Figure 14.2). In gunshot wounds under the chin, they may hold the weapon correctly, but bend their forearm upwards and backwards such that...

Armor Piercing Handgun Ammunition KTW and Its Legacy

In the 1960s, KTW ammunition, a form of armor-piercing handgun ammunition intended for police use, was introduced. It was subsequently banned in some localities because of its potential to perforate bullet-proof vests worn by police. The cartridge was loaded with a light-green Teflon-coated tungsten alloy or steel bullet with a copper half jacket on its base. This jacket, rather than the bullet proper, is gripped by the lands and grooves. Thus, rifling marks will be present only on this jacket and not on the bullet. Because of the KTW controversy, awhole mythologyhasarisenabout armor-piercing handgun ammunition in relationship to bullet proof vests, i.e., soft body armor worn by police. A numberof vapidpublicstate-ments and proposed laws concerning ammunitionallegedlyof this typehas emanated from government officials. Theonlyhandgunammunitioncur-rently manufactured in the United Statesthat will routinelydefeatthesoft body armor worn by police is in the possessionof themilitary....

Intermediate Range Wounds

In addition to the powder tattooing, there may be blackening of the skin or material around the entrance site from soot produced by combustion of the propellant. The size and density of the area of powder blackening vary with the caliber of the weapon, the barrel length, the type of propellant powder, and the distance from muzzle to target. As the range increases, the intensity of powder blackening decreases and the size of the soot pattern area increases. For virtually all handgun cartridges, soot is absent beyond 30 cm (12 in.). (For a more detailed discussion of powder soot, see Chapter 4.) For handguns, forensic textbooks generally have stated that the powder tattooing extends out to a maximum distance of 18 to 24 in. (45 to 60 cm) from the muzzle. Such statements do not take into account the different physical forms of propellant powder. At present, in the United States, handgun cartridges are loaded with four forms of propellant flake, spherical (true) ball powder, flattened...

Loss of Kinetic Energy

Soft-point and hollow-point centerfire rifle bullets not only tend to expand as they go through the body, but also shed lead fragments from the core (see Chapter 7, Lead Snowstorm). This shedding occurs whether or not they strike bone. The pieces of lead fly off the main bullet mass, acting as secondary missiles, contacting more and more tissue, increasing the size of the wound cavity and thus the severity of the wound. Such a phenomenon, the shedding of lead fragments, does not happen to any significant degree with handgun bullets, even if they are soft-point or hollow-point, unless they strike bone. Breaking up of missiles appears to be related to the velocity. The velocity of handgun bullets, even of the new high-velocity loadings, is insufficient to cause the shedding of lead fragments seen with rifle bullets.

Wounds from Centerfire Rifles

Wounds caused by centerfire rifles are markedly different from those caused by handguns or .22 rimfire rifles. Handguns and .22 rimfire rifles are relatively low-velocity weapons with muzzle velocities of between 650 and 1400 ft sec. With the exception of the .357 Magnum and the .44 Magnum, muzzle energies are well below 500 ft-lb. The widely proclaimed .45 automatic has a muzzle velocity of only 850 ft sec, with a muzzle energy of 370 ft-lb. In contrast, the muzzle velocities of modern centerfire rifles range between 2400 and 4000 ft sec (Table 7.1). The muzzle kinetic energy is never less than 1000 ft-lb it is commonly in the 2000 ft-lb range and may be as high as 5000 ft-lb. Because of the low velocities and kinetic energies, injuries from both handgun and .22 rimfire rifle bullets are confined to tissue and organs directly in the wound path. In contrast, a centerfire rifle bullet can injure structures without actually contacting them. Table 7.1 Ballistics of Various Handgun and...

Wound Ballistics of the Shotgun

At close range, the shotgun is the most formidable and destructive of all small arms. For birdshot and buckshot loads, the severity and lethality of a shotgun wound depends on the number of pellets that enter the body, the organs struck by the pellets and the amount of tissue destruction. Like handgun bullets, the extent of tissue destruction from each individual pellet is limited to that tissue they physically shred. Temporary cavities play no significant role in injury. This is, of course, not the case with rifle slugs which, like rifle bullets, produce injury both directly and from temporary cavity formation.

Wounds Seen in The Emergency Room

Some surgeons, especially those who have had military training, perform wide debridement of entrance wounds in the skin from handguns and rimfire rifles even though this is unnecessary due to the small amount of kinetic energy possessed by these bullets. As the removed tissue is supposed to be sent to Surgical Pathology for examination, this tissue can often be retrieved and examined.

Centerfire Rifle Bullets

Hollow Point Bullet Wound Medical

Centerfire rifle bullets differ in construction from handgun bullets in that rifle bullets have to have either full or partial metal jacketing. This is necessary because of the high velocities at which rifle bullets are propelled down a barrel. If the bullets were lead or lead alloy, these high velocities would result in the lead being stripped from the surface of the bullet by the rifling grooves. Some handloaders will load centerfire rifle cartridges with cast lead bullets. In such cases, however, they reduce the powder charge so that the muzzle velocities produced are generally below 2000 ft sec. These bullets may or may not have a gas check. They are easily recognized by their long length and deep cannelures for lubricants (Figure 7.1).

The Forensic Aspects of Ballistics

Rifles and handguns have rifled barrels, that is, spiral grooves have been cut the length of the interior or bore of the barrel (Figure 2.1). Rifling consists of these grooves and the metal left between the grooves the lands (see Figure 1.13). The purpose of rifling is to impart a rotational spin to the bullet along its longitudinal axis. This gyroscopic effect stabilizes the bullet's flight through the air, preventing it from tumbling end over end. This spin does not, however, stabilize the bullet after it enters the body due to the greater density of tissue compared to air. The term twist, as it pertains to rifling, refers to the number of inches or centimeters of bore required for one complete rifling spiral. All modern weapons have a twist which is constant for the entire length of the barrel. Some weapons manufactured in the beginning of the 20 th century, had a gain twist in this type of rifling, the rate of twist increases from breech to muzzle. A different form of rifling for...

Interchangeability of Ammunition in Weapons

Mention should be made of adapters (Figure 10.22). These permit firing of a cartridge in a weapon not chambered for it by the use of a device that fits in the weapon's chamber and will accept a different caliber cartridge. Adapters permit the use of .22 rimfire ammunition in .22-caliber centerfire rifles as well as .32 ACP and .30 Carbine ammunition in high-velocity .30-caliber centerfire rifles. Adapters have been made to permit firing a handgun cartridge from a shotgun and a .410 shotgun cartridge in a 12-gauge shotgun. Rifles have been and still are being chambered for certain handgun cartridges. Rifles are available in calibers .38 Special, .357 Magnum, 9-mm Parabellum, and .44 Magnum. Specialized single-shot handguns chambered for rifle cartridges have been and still are manufactured. The Thompson-Contender, which features interchangeable barrels, can be obtained in calibers .223 Remington, .25-35 Winchester, and .30-30 Winchester, for example.

Methods of Analyzing Gunshot Residues

Typically, when one fires a gun and residue is deposited on the hand, it is on the back of the firing hand. Detection of primer residue on the palms of the hands, instead of on the back of the suspected firing hand, is suggestive of a defensive gesture rather than of firing a gun. It can also be due to handling a gun coated with firearms residue. In suicides with handguns, primer residue on the palm may be due to cradling the gun with this hand at the time of firing. The classical picture of an individual who has fired a handgun is a positive test result on the back of the firing hand and negative results on the other surfaces of the hands. If an individual, instead of firing the weapon, put their hand up in a defensive gesture, with their palm toward the weapon at the time of discharge, elevated levels of primer residue will be present on the palm and sometimes on the back of the hand. In the latter case, primer residue on the back of the hand occurs when the whole hand is engulfed...

Ammunition Myths and Facts

In the 1970s, a major controversy over the use of hollow-point handgun ammunition by police agencies erupted. The arguments against the use of this ammunition were generally emotional, with claims of mutilating wounds and organs reduced to unidentifiable chopped meat. Most of the arguments heard for and against the use of hollow-point handgun ammunition were based on myths, false assumptions, and second-hand stories spread by both opponents and proponents of this type of ammunition. From the introduction of the .38 Special cartridge in 1902 until the late 1970s, handguns chambered for this cartridge were used by most police agencies in the United States. The traditional .38 Special cartridge was loaded with a 158-gr., all-lead, round-nose bullet, propelled at velocities of 700 to 850 ft sec. In the mid-1960s, many police organizations began to complain about this cartridge. They felt that this round did not have any stopping power. They cited numerous instances in which officers,...

Suicides Due to Long Arms

In suicides with long arms (rifles and shotguns), just as with handguns, the preferred sites are the head, chest, and abdomen, in that order. There is, however, very little difference in the percentage of head wounds between the sexes (Table 14.2). Thus, 69 of the men and 65 of the women had entrance wounds of the head.3 The percentage of people shooting themselves in the head with rifles and shotguns is not as great as with handguns. This may be due to the fearsome reputation of these weapons. People do not mind shooting themselves in the head but do not want to blow their head off. In deaths due to long arms, just as in those with handguns, one should examine the hands for the presence of soot as well as test for primer residues. If soot is present, it will be on the hand used to steady the muzzle against the body and is due to blowback from the muzzle. The area involved is the thumb, index finger, and connecting web of skin. The presence of visible soot on the hands is relatively...

Comparison of Bullets

Semi-automatic pistols have been chambered for revolver cartridges, e.g., .32 Smith & Wesson Long, .38 Special, .357 Magnum, .44 Magnum etc. derringers for semi-automatic pistol cartridges (.25 ACP, .32 ACP, 9-mm Parabellum, .45 ACP, etc.), rifle cartridges (.22 Hornet, .223, .30-30, etc.) and shotgun cartridges. Single-shot weapons have been chambered for a host of revolver, pistol, and rifle cartridges. Rifles have been chambered for handgun cartridges. Double-barreled rifles have been produced with one barrel chambered for a rifle cartridge and the other for a shotgun shell.

Short Long and Long Rifle Cartridges

The .22 Short, Long, and Long Rifle cartridges can be fired in both handguns and rifles. The term Long Rifle as it is applied to the most powerful of these three cartridges does not indicate that the cartridge is intended exclusively for rifles. Rifles and handguns chambered for the .22 Long Rifle cartridge will fire the Short and Long cartridges as well. In the case of semi-automatic weapons, however, the weak recoil generated by the Short and Long cartridges is generally insufficient to work the action. A few semi-automatic rifles can fire .22 Short, Long, and Long Rifles interchangeably. Repeated firing of .22 Short cartridges in a weapon chambered for the Long Rifle cartridge may cause leading of the firing chamber, with subsequent difficulty in inserting Long Rifle cartridges. Some handguns and rifles are designed to use Shorts only and will not chamber the longer cartridges. Weapons chambered for the .22 rimfire cartridge have an 0.223-bore diameter with a 1-in 16 in. (1 16)...

Conservation Status

Researchers have found that most rifleman adult helpers were unpaired males that later in the breeding season became paired with female offspring from a nest they had earlier helped to feed and protect. Although studies have not proven this, many experts believe that finding a female mate is easier when unmated males help out with taking care of young birds. Riflemen are a species of New Zealand wren.

Accidental Deaths from Firearms

Handguns that will discharge on dropping fall into five general categories Just as for handguns, it is possible under certain circumstances for a rifle or shotgun to discharge when dropped. This can be due to the intrinsic design of the weapon, poor workmanship, alteration of internal parts or broken parts. With some bolt-action rifles, if (1) the trigger is held back as, (2) the action is opened, (3) a round is chambered, and (4) the action closed, while the rifle is not cocked, the firing pin is resting on the primer. If the rifle is then dropped a few feet, it may discharge. What the advantage is in carrying a rifle in this condition eludes the author. Accidental discharges of rifles and shotguns are rare compared with discharge of handguns. In all alleged cases of accidental discharge of a long arm, as for a handgun, the weapon should be examined by an experienced firearms examiner for defects in design or construction, broken parts, or wear.

Wounds from Shotguns

Shotguns differ from rifles and handguns in construction, ammunition, ballistics, and use. Rifles and handguns fire a single projectile down a rifled barrel. Shotguns have a smooth bore. Although they can fire a single projectile, they are usually employed to fire multiple pellets. Rifled shotgun barrels, intended for use with slugs, are available. Shotguns may be autoloaders, pump (slide action), over unders, side-by-side, bolt action or single shot. Some shotguns intended for military and or police use convert from semiautomatic to pump action and back as the user desires.

Ammunition Intended for Use In Indoor Ranges

In order to reduce lead pollution in indoor ranges, all the major U.S. ammunition manufacturers have introduced handgun ammunition loaded with lead free primers and bullets that either have the lead core completely enclosed (sealed) or are made of solid copper or zinc. Sealing the lead core is important in that lead vaporized from the exposed core at the base of the bullet may contribute more to atmospheric contamination than primer lead.

Centerfire Rifle Wounds

Typically circular in shape and usually larger in diameter than those due to pistol bullets. There is almost never tearing of the skin due to gas. The edges of the wound are seared from the effect of the hot gases of combustion. Powder soot is deposited in and around the wound. The amount of soot, however, is less than that seen with most handguns. The imprint of the muzzle of the weapon is commonly present (Figure 7.9A). Such imprints are Distant entrance wounds of the trunk inflicted by centerfire rifle bullets while often similar to those produced by handgun bullets, may differ by one or more of the following attributes the abrasion ring around the entrance is narrower the abrasion ring is absent multiple small (less than 1 mm)

Zip Guns

Zip guns were most commonly encountered in poverty-stricken areas where there were restrictive firearms legislation, as these weapons could be easily manufactured with inexpensive materials, few tools, and limited skills. In the 1950s in New York City, they were often manufactured in high school shop classes. The increased mobility and affluence of the population, combined with the ready availability of inexpensive handguns, has resulted in the disappearance of the zip gun from the crime scene in the U.S. The only exception appears to be conversion of tear gas pens to firearms. This still retains some minimal popularity, perhaps because these devices do not immediately appear to be firearms and can be carried openly without eliciting suspicion.

Frangible Bullets

Centerfire handgun ammunition, and to a lesser degree rifle ammunition, loaded with frangible bullets are now produced by all major ammunition manufacturers. The bullets are constructed of various materials depending on the manufacturer copper powder compressed under high pressure copper with a polymer binding agent powdered tungsten, copper and a nylon matrix twisted strands of zinc and powdered iron encased in an electroplated jacket. Kaplan et al. tested frangible ammunition composed of copper particulate material in calibers .38 Special, 9-mm Parabellum and .223 by firing them into the heads of pigs.19 The wounds caused by the handgun bullets were comparable in severity to those caused by regular bullets. The frangible handgun bullets, when recovered, while demonstrating class characteristics, did not possess individual markings necessary for bullet-to-gun comparison. The .223 frangible bullets fragmented in the heads. The x-ray picture produced was similar to the lead snowstorm...

Shotgun Wounds

Shotgun Contact Wound

As the range increases beyond one to two cm from the muzzle to target, powder tattooing will occur (Figure 8.24). Powder tattooing from a shotgun is less dense than the tattooing a handgun produces at the same range. This is due to more complete consumption of powder caused by the greater barrel length. The maximum range out to which powder tattooing occurs from a shotgun depends to a great degree on the type of powder, i.e., ball or flake. In shotgun shells loaded with flake powder and fired in a 28-in. barrel 12-gauge shotgun with a modified choke, powder tattooing was present out to 24 in. (60 cm) but disappeared by 30 in. (75 cm).5 Using the same weapon and firing cartridges loaded with ball powder, definite tattooing was present at 30 in. (75 cm), with a very few marks present at 36 in. (90 cm), but absent by 40 in. (125 cm). Just as in handguns, ball powder produces fine powder tattoo marks and can readily perforate clothing (Figure 8.24). All Winchester shotgun ammunition is...

Assault Rifles

While entrance wounds of the head, and usually the exits, can easily be mistaken for wounds inflicted by handguns, internally, there are very severe injuries with multiple fractures of the skull and extensive lacerations of the brain. The severe nature of the internal injuries clearly indicate that one is dealing with a centerfire rifle and not a handgun. 3. Tangential and shallow (superficial) perforating wounds of the head, are extremely mutilating. Evisceration of part or all of the brain is common. These wounds cannot be mistaken for handgun wounds. 4. In distant wounds of the trunk, the entrance wounds appear similar to small caliber handgun wounds. Exit wounds are variable in size, sometimes indistinguishable from those from handgun bullets, though at other times too large. The wounds to the internal organs (chest and abdomen) are often no more severe in appearance than those from 9 mm or .357 Magnum handgun bullets. In many cases, especially involving bullets with a mild steel...

Acanthisitta chloris

Physical characteristics Riflemen are the smallest living bird species in New Zealand. They have greenish upperparts and whitish undersides with yellow wash on the sides. Females are generally duller than males and are brown striped. Males have a bright yellow-green back while females have a back that is striped with darker and lighter browns and flecked with red-brown spots. Both sexes have a slightly upturned bill, with the female bill being a little more upturned. They have white bellies and white markings above the eyes. Their wings have a yellow bar with a white spot at the end of the bar and yellowish rumps and flanks. Males are generally smaller than females, Riflemen have been able to adapt to environments with non-native plants, allowing them to remain successful as humans have introduced new plants to New Zealand. (Illustration by Barbara Duperron. Reproduced by permission.) Geographic range Riflemen are found on both main islands (North Island and South Island) of New...

Bang Sticks

A Bang Stick is a device used by skin divers and fisherman to kill sharks, large fish, or alligators. It is also called a fish popper, shark stick or power head. A Bang Stick consists of a metal cylinder or barrel that contains a cartridge chamber. The front end of the cylinder is open to allow exit of the bullet. The other end is closed by a screw-on, cap-like breech through which a firing pin can project. The pin is ordinarily held out of the breech by a spring. A metal shaft, at least 26 inches in length, is permanently attached to the base of the firing pin. Sticks of varying length can, in turn, be attached to the back of the shaft. When the open end of the cylinder is jammed hard against a target, such as a shark, the chamber and breech are forced back, overcoming the tension of the spring. The firing pin is forced through a hole in the breech face into the chamber firing the cartridge. The bullet then exits the open end of the cylinder. Bang Sticks may be acquired in various...

Wound Ballistics

In the case of handgun bullets, the bullet produces a direct path of destruction with very little lateral extension within the surrounding tissues, i.e., only a small temporary cavity is produced. As a general rule, the temporary cavity plays little or no role in the extent of wounding. To cause significant injuries to a structure, a handgun bullet must strike that structure directly. The amount of kinetic energy lost in the tissue by the bullet is insufficient to cause the remote injuries produced by a high-velocity rifle bullet. With a centerfire rifle bullet, the permanent cavity in tissue is usually larger in diameter than the bullet. With a low-energy projectile such as a handgun bullet, the permanent track is often distinctly smaller in diameter. Tissue elasticity with contraction of the surrounding tissue accounts for this latter phenomenon. If, however, the elastic limit of the tissue has been exceeded by the handgun bullet, the tissue tears, and a large irregular wound track...

Intermediary Targets

Passage of a semi-jacketed bullet, whether from a rifle or handgun, through an intermediary target can result in separation of the jacket and the core. Thornton found that this occurred in half the instances when a .38 Special jacketed hollow-point bullet passed through a tempered-glass automobile window.11 In one of the author's cases, a .223 semi-jacketed soft-point The most common intermediary targets seen in forensic medicine are the upper extremities, doors, and car windows. As previously stated, in about half the instances when a semi-jacketed handgun bullet passes through the tempered-glass window of a car, there will be jacket and core separation. The core, because of its greater mass, may continue the original trajectory for a short distance, retaining most of the impact velocity and, thus, can readily penetrate the victim. The jacket, because of its light weight, rapidly loses velocity and usually flies off at an angle from the path of the core. If the jacket does hit the...

Contact Wounds

In the author's experience, with use of the dissecting microscope, soot is always present in contact handgun wounds, with powder particles identified The author has never seen a case in which flake powder traveled completely through either the head or trunk and was in or adjacent to the exit. He has knowledge, however of one case involving cylindrical powder in which an individual shot himself in the head with a .44 Magnum handgun and cylindrical powder grains were present in the wound tract through the brain, and at the exit in the scalp.3 In contact wounds of the trunk, stellate or cruciform entrances in the skin usually do not occur, even when the weapon and ammunition used produce large volumes of gas, because the gas is able to expand into the abdominal cavity, chest cavity, or soft tissue. Rarely, contact wounds of the chest overlying the sternum, inflicted by handguns firing high-velocity pistol ammunition, may produce extremely large circular wounds of entrance with ragged...

Distant Wounds

In distant gunshot wounds, the muzzle of the weapon is sufficiently far from the body so that there is neither deposition of soot nor powder tattooing. For centerfire handguns, distant gunshot wounds begin beyond 24 in. (60 cm) from muzzle to target for cartridges loaded with flake powder and Whether powder perforates clothing to mark the skin depends on the nature of the material, the number of layers of cloth, and the physical form of the powder. With handguns, ball powder can readily perforate one and even two layers of cloth to produce tattooing of the underlying skin (Figure 5.19). Rarely, ball powder will perforate three layers. The author has never seen it perforate four layers and produce tattooing. While flake powder usually does not perforate even one layer of cloth, at very close range, it may do so. Range determinations cannot be made for distant gunshot wounds. Bullets fired from 5, 50, or 500 ft will produce identical entrances. Gunshot wounds of entrance, whatever the...

Near Contact Wounds

Are most prominent in wounds inflicted by .22 Magnum handguns whose cartridges contain ball powder. Near-contact wounds with handguns usually occur at ranges less than 10 mm. There is some variation depending on caliber, ammunition, and barrel length. The gas produced by combustion of the propellant can produce internal injuries as severe as or more severe than injuries produced by the bullet. Gas-produced injuries are most severe in the head because of the closed and unyielding nature of the skull. The skull, unlike the chest or abdominal cavity, cannot expand to relieve the pressure of the entering gases. In contact wounds of the head from high-velocity rifles or shotguns, large quantities of gas entering the skull produce massive blow-out fractures with extensive mutilating injuries. The top of the head is often literally blown off with partial or complete evisceration of the brain. Contact wounds of the head with handguns, while often producing secondary skull fractures, do not...

Small Arms

There are five general categories of small arms handguns, rifles, shotguns, submachine guns, and machine guns. Handguns There are four basic types of handguns Revolvers. The revolver is the most common type of handgun in the United States. Revolvers have a revolving cylinder that contains several chambers, each of which holds one cartridge. The cylinder is rotated mechanically so as to align each chamber successively with the barrel and firing pin. The first revolver was produced by Samuel Colt in 1835-1836. Auto-loading pistols (automatics). Auto-loading or automatic pistols make up the fourth category of handguns. The term automatic pistol is a misnomer, as this form of pistol is an auto-loader in which the trigger must be pulled for every shot fired. Regardless of the correct terminology, however, these weapons are invariably called automatics or just pistols. These pistols use the forces generated by the fired cartridge to operate the mechanism that extracts and ejects the empty...

Air Weapons

Air-powered guns are used throughout the world for target shooting, sport, and firearms training. These devices range from toys exemplified by the Daisy BB gun to expensive, highly sophisticated custom air rifles. There are, however, other air- and gas-powered guns with considerably greater velocity and striking energy than that of the Daisy BB gun. These devices are more properly classified as weapons as they can cause significant physical injury and occasionally death. Austrian armies used air rifles against the French during the Napoleonic wars from 1799 to 1809.2 These weapons were rifles of 12.8-mm caliber with an effective range between 100 and 150 yd. Air rifles, air shotguns, and air pistols were used for hunting and target shooting during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Air rifles are still used extensively for target shooting as well as gun training.

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