Study Proves Shooters Position Can’t Be Proven By Shell Casings
A study made by the experts at Force Science Institute has found that experts can not accurately determine the location of a shooter based on spent shell casings found at a crime scene. Using controlled conditions the experts found that many variables such as weapon type, ammunition, grip, firing position and ground surface can effect where shell casings come to rest at a crime scene.
Why is this important? When trying a murder or aggravated assault case prosecutors will some times go to great lengths to try and make the evidence at a crime scene fit their theory of the case. Criminal lawyers do the same thing. The position of a shooter is always a critical fact in these types of cases especially in a self-defense case. Prosecutors will some times attempt to have a police officer offer an opinion on where the shooter was standing when the shots were fired based on where the spent shell casings were recovered. Armed with this study any criminal lawyer can either prevent this type of evidence from reaching the jurors ears or destroy the witnesses credibility on cross-examination.
If the prosecution attempts to offer this type of evidence the criminal lawyer should request a 702, 703 and 705 hearings found in the Texas Rules of Evidence. If the judge over rules your objections then cross-examine the witness using the study as your guide. It isn’t rocket science and most juries will easily understand the information.