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Blunt force homicides in Denmark 1992-2016

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Blunt force trauma is a common homicide method, inflicted in three different ways: bodily force, assault with blunt objects of various types and falls from height. The objective of this study is to provide thorough information on blunt force homicides with data on the victims, the offenders, the surrounding circumstances, the injury methods, the extent of injuries, and survival time, which will help inform the inexperienced as well as the seasoned forensic pathologist in their daily work with death investigation and as expert witnesses in court. We have analyzed autopsy reports and available case files of 311 blunt force homicides, making up 21.9% of all homicides in Denmark during 1992-2016. Most victims and offenders were male. Altercation in the setting of nightlife and intoxication was common in male victims, while most female victims were killed in a domestic setting. Bodily force was the most common primary homicide method, followed by assault with a blunt object and fall from height. The head was the region that most often had external injuries, with no noteworthy difference between cases with bodily force and blunt objects. Two out of three victims had one or more lacerations, most often located on the head and more often on the front. Brain injury was the primary cause of death in at least 72.0% victims. Compared to bodily force victims of blunt object assault were especially prone to skull and brain injuries, had a higher trauma score, and more died at the crime scene and had a shorter survival time.

TidsskriftJournal of Forensic Sciences
Sider (fra-til)2343-2350
Antal sider8
StatusUdgivet - nov. 2022

Bibliografisk note

© 2022 The Authors. Journal of Forensic Sciences published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of American Academy of Forensic Sciences.

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