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Full text of "Medical Jurisprudence And Toxicology"

SUICIDAL,  HOMICIDAL AND ACCIDENTAL WOUNDS

241

In a third case a kulchal was thrust into the vagina oŁ a Hindu woman after
she was killed by inflicting several wounds on the head and neck with a
heavy cutting weapon.

} Incised wounds of a trifling nature on the genitals may be self-inflicted.
I came across a case where an adult male inflicted a superficial cut across
the root of the penis over its dorsum and directed from left to right and
brought a charge against his enemy who had assaulted him with a lathi
(club).

CJunshot wounds inflicted in the mouth, or on the forehead, temple or
heart, are, as a rule, suicidal when the skin in the neighbourhood is
blackened, scorched and tattooed. In such cases the hand used to steady
the weapon at the muzzle end may be blackened or scorched from the
discharge of the same and may be stained with spirting of the blood from
the injured arteries. Gunshot wounds situated on the back and on the
occipital region are usually homicidal. Those situated on the sides and
front may be accidental or homicidal.         ****

^Lacerated wounds are either accidental or homicidal. Accidental
woun3s are generally situated on the exposed parts of the body and mostly
on the same side. Lacerated wounds of the vertex are homicidal unless
there is a history of some weight falling from a height on the top of the head
or of the victim having fallen head downwards from a height, in which latter
case there will be abrasions and lacerations on other parts of the body.
Lacerated wounds on the forehead may be homicidal or accidental.
TJacerated wounds on the occiput are more often homicidal than accidental.
If they are homicidal, wounds may be found on the backs of the fingers as
the assaulted person involuntarily raises his hand to guard against the blow,
and consequently the fingers are likely to be injured.

2.   The  Number,   Direction  and
Extent    of   the   Wounds.—Several
injuries on  the body,  if  they  are
deep and extensive, are, as a rule,
homicidal   if   we   except   accidents
from, falls,  motor   cars  and  other
vehicles.   In India, murderers select
a heavy cutting instrument, such as
a gaiidasa (chopper), banfca, JcTmrpi,
kulhari (axe), sword, etc. and inflict
several deadly wounds on the head
cutting the skull bones and expos-
ing   the   brain   tissue,   or   on   the
neck  cutting the  larynx,  oesopha-
gus, large blood vessels,  vertebrae
and   even   the   spinal   cord.   They
are    not    generally    satisfied    by
inflicting    only    one    wound,    but
inflict several mortal wounds, and
sometimes hack the body so much
that   the   head   is   either   severed
altogether    from    the    trunk,    or
remains connected to it by a mere
tag of skin.   In additions to
several wounds are usually
ed on the trunk and
case    twenty-six
body   of   a  boy,
were inflicted with' a                   a

fig. 206.—Incised wounds on fingers and
hands due to attempts to ward oS

assailant's knife.
16