Analysis of Defence Injuries in Homicide Cases Categorised in Accordance to Homicide Injury Scale
Keywords:Defence injuries; Homicide; Homicide Injury Scale
Introduction: The instinct of self-preservation drives a person to defend themselves from any violent attack
which in itself may produce injuries on the body. These are termed as defence injuries. This study aims to
analyse defence injuries in homicide cases which are categorised based on its severity as determined by
Homicide Injury Scale (HIS).
Methods: This is a retrospective study which included all homicide cases which were autopsied during a
twelve year period in a tertiary care hospital. Each of these cases were categorised according to the HIS. The
presence, type and distribution of defence injuries were then tabulated and analysed.
Results: A total of 85 homicide cases were autopsied during the specified study period. Out of these 85
cases, 53 cases showed defence injuries (62%) and majority of these cases fell under higher categories of
HIS. Cases categorised under HIS 2,3 and 4 had defence wounds which were more blunt force in nature
while cases under HIS 5 and 6 had more sharp force defence injuries. Passive defence injuries were found
uniformly across all categories of HIS, however active defence injuries were found more in higher categories
of HIS than in lower ones.
Conclusion: This is rare study where the pattern and distribution of defence injuries was analysed based on
a standardised scale. Active defence injuries were more commonly seen in homicide cases placed on higher
scales of HIS.
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