Burnt bones reveal gruesome facts

In the world of forensic pathology, many mysterious cases of death with hidden horrors are exposed by pathologists through intensive investigation; one such case was when Dr Akmal Khan was given a bunch of bones and managed to crack the mystery of the how the death happened.

“One of the interesting cases that I encountered with one of my registrars recently, was actually a case of bones that were found out in a field where the municipality was burning the field,” said Khan.

“They found these sets of bones after they burnt the field that was filled with long grass.”

What was interesting about the bones was that Khan determined the cause of death to be suffocation, almost  unheard of when presented with a skeleton.

“When we encountered the body here, it was just bones with a little bit of tissue attached to it. What we found was that the bones seemed to be twisted, almost like the arms were tied behind the back.

“And then there was this plastic packet that was burnt on the face which was very unusual.

“Initially we thought it may have just been a packet that was flying by that during the fire. But then it would be very unusual for high grass to have the plastic packet at the face level of the body.

“Then you would expect it to only be on the exposed area, but this packet was completely around the skull, almost tied around the skull.

“It was very interesting for us as we had a possible case of suffocation with plastic packet and hands tied around the back, so what we also found from the actual bones is that there were fractures to the arms, that would indicate the arms were turned around and put behind the back.

“In this case the burning of the field assisted us in making the diagnosis.”


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