Stray Bullet Injures Man in Public Park

Michael Talve, CEO

Written by
— Updated on June 28, 2017

This case involves an injury to a male in a wooded area. The plaintiff brought his son to go on a bicycle and hiking trip at the edge of a public park. When they arrived, they set up their supplies at a picnic table to eat their lunch. About one mile away from where they were sitting, a group of individuals, the defendants, were shooting guns on a separate piece of private property. They were shooting a long range rifle at a box they had tied to a branch in a tree. One of them began to shoot at the box and then at other branches that were part of the tree. The men were shooting approximately 10-12 feet off the ground. One bullet, however, missed the box and the tree, and sailed through the air and struck a rock near where the man was eating with his son. The bullet ricocheted off of the rock and hit the plaintiff in the leg. The bullet became stuck in his leg and could not be removed due to its location. The surgery would be extremely complex and could do more harm than good. As a result of his injury, the plaintiff now walked with a cane and a limp, and could no longer work as a fitness trainer. It was later discovered that the individual who owned the guns traded them for a dirt bike and was no longer in possession of the firearms.

Question(s) For Expert Witness

  • Are you capable of doing a trajectory analysis in this case?

Expert Witness Response E-006689

I have served as an expert on many cases involving bullet trajectory analysis. I can definitely utilize the information from this case to establish where the bullet that injured the plaintiff came from. In a case such as this, there are many factors that can affect the trajectory of the bullet which struck the plaintiff. It is important to take into consideration the weather and atmospheric conditions on the day the incident occurred, as these can greatly impact the speed and distance the bullet traveled. Also, to determine whether or not the bullet came from the defendant’s gun, their precise location, as well as the location of the plaintiff and his son, needs to be ascertained. Additionally, I would examine the plaintiff’s leg to see the injury. This can help determine the angle at which the bullet entered the plaintiff’s leg. Then, through a reconstructive analysis of the data, the variables can be compared and an accurate model can be established. From that, the origination point of the bullet can be established.

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