Multiple Entrance Wounds From One Bullet Due to the Use of a Silencer

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When a bullet strikes an interposed object before entering a body, the bullet may fragment, or particles from the interposed object may be accelerated. Such secondary missiles may cause multiple entrance wounds if a body is located in line with their flight path. In the unusual case reported here, a silencer acted as an interposed object. The bullet disintegrated completely after impact with the central part of the silencer baffles, which were misaligned. Some bullet fragments were retained inside the silencer, and some exited as a collection of missiles, comparable to shotgun pellets. From a distance of several meters, the fragments wounded the victim at seven different anatomic sites. Use of a silencer should be considered when bullet fragments are recovered from a scene or victim but no other appropriate interposed object is found.

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