Comparison of three collection methods for the sodium rhodizonate detection of gunshot residues on hands


ID Serval
Article: article d'un périodique ou d'un magazine.
Comparison of three collection methods for the sodium rhodizonate detection of gunshot residues on hands
Science & Justice
Werner Denis, Gassner Anne-Laure, Marti Jorina, Christen Stephan, Wyss Philipp, Weyermann Céline
Statut éditorial
Date de publication
The aim of this study was to compare three gunshot residue (GSR) collection methods used in conjunction with chemographic detection applied by different regional Swiss police services. The specimens were collected from the hands of a shooter with either filter paper (Filter method) or adhesive foil. The adhesive foil was then either applied against photographic paper during visualisation (AF Photo method) or coated with a layer of polyvinyl alcohol (AF PVAL method). The experiments involved two conditions of the examined hands, i.e. dry and humidified. The residues were revealed using the sodium rhodizonate test (SRT). Preliminary tests assessing the possibility of conducting a confirmatory Scanning Electron Microscopy coupled to Energy Dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM/EDX) analysis after the chemographic test were performed on a number of specimens by cutting positive spots and mounting them on stubs. Obtained results were compared in terms of effectiveness - number of positive spots, time requirements, quality of subsequent SEM-EDX analysis, ease of use and cost.
The Filter method generally yielded a high-quality detection with both dry and humidified hands, as well as a simple, quick and efficient confirmation by SEM/EDX. The AF Photo performed well on dry hands, but not on humidified hands. The AF PVAL method performance was lower compared to the other methods in both examined conditions of the hands. The SEM/EDX analysis showed that the Filter and AF PVAL method provided satisfactory results when a sufficient carbon coating thickness was applied to the cuttings. It was also observed that the thinner the PVAL layer, the better the quality of the spectra and obtained images in SEM/EDX. Furthermore, the surface of the photographic paper did not seem to be conductive, even after the application of a thick layer of carbon.
In conclusion, the Filter method gave the best overall results, but its application required slightly more time and expertise than the two other methods.
Firearm discharge residues, Chemographic detection methods, Filter paper, Adhesive foil, Photographic paper (PVAL), Scanning electron microscopy - energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM-EDX)
Création de la notice
23/09/2019 18:14
Dernière modification de la notice
24/09/2019 5:11
Données d'usage