A New Peer Reviewed Article for 2017

Jan 09, 2017

PSI's CEO Craig Fries, are co-authored a paper that has been accepted in the peer-reviewed Forensic Science International: Gunshot Wound Trajectory Analysis Using Forensic Animation to Establish Relative Positions of Shooter and Victim.

This paper is based upon a case study PSI published last year titled: Complex Officer Involved Shooting Reconstruction.

An unarmed, young man is shot in the back as he is running away by a police officer. The officer states that the deceased had fallen and was in the process of turning towards the officer with a weapon in his hand when the officer elected to fire, claiming self-defense. PSI was retained to reconstruct the events based upon the physical evidence, the testimony of the officer and other eye witnesses. The results of the exhaustive analysis showed that the officers’ statements were
not supported by the evidence.

The officer shot at the young man as he was fleeing and had entered an area that was too dark to allow the officer to discern the specific motions of the deceased. Additionally, PSI determined that prior to being shot by the officer, the deceased had discarded his legally carried and owned firearm and was therefore unarmed at the time the officer elected to shoot him.

PSI was tasked in taking a massive data set in conjunction with the physical environment and determining the locations and actions of both the shooting officer and the shooting victim, and then comparing the results with the officer’s sworn testimony. PSI worked with Forensic Pathologist Dr. Judy Melinek and Human Factors expert Jerry Wachtel on the analysis. The multi-step process required to reconstruct this complex and dynamic event is detailed in the case study.


Gunshot wound modeling, creation of the 3D Working Model both virtually and at the scene, deriving the posture of the victim when shot, a complete nighttime visibility study, and analysis of the timing and locations leading up to and including the shooting all played integral parts in the comparison of the physical evidence to the shooting officer's testimony.

Click here for Entire Case Study

Click here for PSI's Information / Case Study Library

Click here to Request a Copy of the FRE 26(b) Report


Craig Fries


Craig Fries is the Founder and President of Precision Simulations, Inc., the foremost forensic analysis and animation firm in the US. In this role he has created or directed over 1,000 3D forensic animations for use in criminal and civil litigation and has maintained a 100% record of non-exclusion at trial. As a pioneer in the field of forensic laser scanning, Craig created the first 3D animation based upon laser scan data ever admitted at trial in the US, and has been at the forefront of the use of the technology in homicide and accident investigation since.

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