Lee Boyd Malvo Case

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October 2nd, 2002 was the start of a long and horrific three weeks in the Washington DC Metropolitan Area. People were terrified to be in the area and everyone was on edge. What appeared to be random killings, turned out to be a well-organized series of senseless shootings that took the lives of ten innocent people. After days of people being scared to death and much confusion, investigators discovered that there were two suspects in the shootings; John Allen Muhammad and his teenage partner Lee Boyd Malvo and they were in a blue 1990 Chevrolet Caprice sedan designed to terrorize people. This break in the case came when one of the suspects called the tip hotline and told them to look into a murder in Alabama, which lead to the case being…show more content…
At a news conference, Michael Bouchard of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms told reports the rifle “has been forensically determined to be the murder weapon”. Investigators were able to match Muhammad’s rifles to 11 of the 14 shootings by a series of ballistic tests. First the bullets were recovered from the victims. When the rifle was found they were able to match them up by the markings or rifling impressions pattern on the fired ammunition by the barrel of the rifle. The rifling pattern in the barrel that fired a particular bullet can be determined by counting the number of groove or land impressions around the circumference of the bullet. Then, by holding the nose of the bullet pointing away from you, the direction the impressions run away from you (either to your left or right) determines the direction of twist. If the rifling impression pattern on the bullet matches the rifling pattern in the barrel of the questioned firearm, the next step is to measure the rifling impressions on the bullet. The lands and grooves on a bullet are measured in thousandths of an inch or in millimeters. One way to measure individual rifling impressions is to use a micrometer, or with advanced technology the majority of crime labs use a comparison microscope; which is two microscopes connected to an optical bridge which allows the viewer to observe two objects simultaneously with the same degree of…show more content…
The attacks were carried out with a Bushmaster XM-15 semiautomatic .223 caliber rifle equipped with an EOTech holographic weapon sight which is effective at ranges of between 50 and 600 yards. Investigators also discovered that the trunk on the Chevrolet Caprice was made to serve as a “rolling sniper’s nest”. The back seat was made to allow someone to access the trunk from inside the car and be put back together quickly as if it were never modified. The shooter could lie prone and shoot from a small hole near the license plate. The rifle subsequently was linked to Muhammad and it was a key piece of evidence used in Federal Court along with other pieces of evidence that were gathered during the investigation. John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo were charged, tried and convicted for the shootings. Muhammad receives a death sentence and was executed on November 10, 2009. Malvo receives life in prison without

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