Three individuals went deer hunting. Two of the individuals decided to check on the deer feeders in the middle of the night in a side-by-side vehicle. The individual who stayed in the house was awoken by a loud noise outside. He went outside to find the side-by-side turned over on its side. During the incident, one of the individuals died. The other individual said the side-by-side had rolled, and the deceased individual was driving.
Mr. Weaver was asked to determine who was driving.
The police had suspected wrongdoing when they arrived on the scene. The forensic team took a plethora of photographs, 3D scans, and drone footage of both the side-by-side and the scene.
The photographs show scrape marks, dirt and debris, and embedded aggregate in the plastic of the passenger side of the side-by-side.
There was blood splatter on the circumference of both tires on the passenger side.
This blood splatter evidence indicated that the side-by-side was put up on its tires, moved, and then driven through the pool of blood that had developed from the deceased individual’s traumatic brain injury.
The surviving individual picked up the side-by-side with a tractor. This was determined by the scraping evidence on the roof.
Mr. Weaver and the Explico team reconstructed the accident using camera-matching techniques. They matched everything at the scene in place based on the scans and drone footage in order to model the vehicle dynamics to understand how the occupants would have moved. They also attempted to match several of the tire marks in the gravel driveway to determine whether the side-by-side could have rolled onto the driver’s side and come to rest in the position that was photographed by the police.
The scenario provided by the individual in the accident was that the two individuals were joy-riding and doing “donuts” on the driveway. The Explico team was unable to match the vehicle dynamics in this scenario to duplicate the rest position. Further, the injuries sustained to the skull of the deceased individual were not consistent with the rest position of the side-by-side.
This is because this scenario did not occur, and in fact, the scene had been manipulated, and the vehicle had been moved prior to the police investigation.
The surviving individual was the driver, and the deceased individual was in the passenger seat.