Abstract: A sawed-off shotgun is a type of shotgun with a shorter gun barrel and often a shorter or absent stock. Due to a lower muzzle velocity and wider spread of shot these sawed-off shotguns have a shorter effective range. In spite of these disadvantages, the main purpose of shortening the barrels is to make them easier to conceal and transport. In this study, researchers aimed to document the findings of shots on experimental targets at different ranges by use of a sawed off and a regular shotgun. Reports of Ballistic Division of Physical Examination Department of Council of Forensic Medicine between the years 2009 to 2012 were retrospectively searched. Reports on sawed-off shotguns were evaluated on the basis of the type of the weapon, length of the barrel, ratio of the barrel length to the whole length, caliber, firing ability. Total files of the Ballistic Division between the years 2009 to 2012 were 6199. Retrospective evaluation of the files revealed presence of total 48 sawed-off shotgun cases. Trial shots by a sawed-off shotgun revealed similar defects on the cotton targets with the shots of a regular shotgun for the ranges of 50, 75 and 100 cm. These kinds of shotguns are being used in criminal acts mostly for the purpose of concealing it easily. The range of fire of these shotguns and the overall effects may be different due to shorter barrel length. In evaluation of cases with these guns this issue must be in mind. In order to decrease the use of sawed off shotguns in criminal acts in the country these kind of shotguns must be accepted as handguns due to lacking the nature of being a shotgun and the penalties must be imposed accordingly.
Bahadir Kumral, Ercan Aslan and Yalcin Buyuk, 2013. Ballistic Examination Findings of Sawed-Off Shotguns Referred to Council of Forensic Medicine, Istanbul, Turkey. Journal of Animal and Veterinary Advances, 12: 977-981.