Testimony of Evan Hodge in the
Trial of Arlo Looking Cloud
February, 2004

Call your next witness.

MR. MANDEL: United States would call Evan Hodge, Your Honor.


called as a witness, being first duly sworn, testified and

said as follows:


Q. Sir, could you state your name, please?

A. My name is Evan Hodge, E-V-A-N, H-O-D-G-E.

Q. What is your current occupation, sir?

A. I am retired.

Q. Can you tell us what your previous work background is?

A. I retired earlier this, earlier last year from the

Vermont State Police Forensic Laboratory where I worked for

approximately fourteen years after my retirement from the FBI

laboratory in 1988.

Q. How long were you with the FBI laboratory, sir?

A. Approximately 26 years.

Q. Can you tell us what your duties were there at the FBI laboratory?

A. I retired as the chief of the firearms and tool mark

identification unit. I was prior to that a firearm and tool mark examiner.

Q. That would have been for the entire time you were there at the lab?

A. Well, from 1970. I spent a short period of time in the

field in 1969 and 1968. Prior to that I was a technician in

the FBI laboratory prior to becoming an FBI agent. I returned

to the laboratory in late 1969. Stayed there until 1988 when I retired.

Q. Was one of your duties to perform ballistic examinations, sir?

A. Yes, sir.

Q. Can you tell us, did you have specialized training in

order to be able to do that?

A. Yes, I did.

Q. What was that?

A. Well, as I said a moment ago, I did have approximately

five years in the firearms and tool marks unit as a support

technician, which pretty well taught me the expertise of

firearms and tool marks identification. When I returned as an

agent I went through the formal aspect of training which would

include reading whatever literature that I didn't read, and

going through a series of moot courts, and visiting various

firearms manufacturing facilities to see exactly how guns were made.

Q. Was there also educational background regarding this, sir?

A. Well, I did, I have a Bachelors Degree and my

undergraduate studies were engineering and business

administration. I also have a Masters Degree in forensic

science, but I earned that degree after I returned to the laboratory.

Q. Sir, can you tell us generally what types of things you

are able to determine through ballistic examination?

A. Well, if we are talking about strictly a bullet, you

look at the bullet, you can determine its caliber, you can

perhaps determine who made the bullet. You can determine the

type of rifling in the gun barrel from which it was fired, and

if the rifling impressions in that bullet are sufficiently

detailed, you can identify it with the gun from which it was

fired if you have that gun.

Q. So did you conduct an investigation as to some ballistic

evidence in a case that involved the death of Anna Mae


A. Yes, sir, I did.

Q. Sir, I have handed you what's been marked Exhibit No.

33. I will ask you if you recognize that item?

A. Yes, sir, I do.

Q. Can you tell us what that is?

A. This is a lead bullet which I designated as Q 11. It

was received by me from Rapid City, South Dakota in March of 1976.

Q. Did you conduct an examination of that item?

A. I did.

Q. Can you tell us what you were able to determine from

that examination, sir?

A. Very little. Only that it is a 32 caliber lead bullet

of the type used in revolvers, and that is basically it.

There are no remaining rifling impressions so I could

determine the type of rifling in the gun barrel from which it

was fired. And that's basically all I could tell was that it

was a 32 caliber lead bullet.

Q. Were you able to tell anything as to the probable

manufacturer of the bullet?

A. It looks to me it is most likely of Winchester manufacture.

Q. Is it unusual to have that little identifying material

or markings on a bullet?

A. Not at all.

Q. Why not?

A. Well, it is soft lead, so that anything that comes, it

comes in contact with it will distort the bullet. The other

very good reason for not having those marks is the condition

of the gun barrel. If the gun barrel was badly rusted, then

the bullet may never actually get involved with the lands and

grooves in the gun barrel. Or if the barrel was heavily

leaded, that could also preclude any markings from the barrel

being put on the bullet itself.

Q. So beyond the probable manufacturer and the fact that it

was 32 caliber, and probably from a handgun, is there anything

else you are able to determine, sir?

A. No, sir.

Q. And you had no weapon to do any kind of comparison on, correct?

A. No, I didn't.

Q. If you had a weapon available, would it have been

possible to do a comparison based on the condition of this bullet?

A. No, it would not.

MR. MANDEL: I have no further questions, Your Honor.

THE COURT: Cross examine.


Q. The bullet was copper coated, is that right?

A. Yes. It is one of the reasons why I would think it is a

Winchester. There was copper coating on it.

Q. Would a bullet of that type be accurate for thirty feet?

A. At thirty feet?

Q. Urn-hum?

A. That's problematical, I don't know.

MR. RENSCH: Thank you.

THE COURT: I have a question. Sir, you mentioned

revolver, with that were you being specific as to revolver or

within that did you mean to include pistol also.

THE WITNESS: Normally, Your Honor, I am only going

by probabilities here, normally this type of bullet is found

in revolver cartridges, which is why I would say revolver.

THE COURT: Thank you, the Court's question give rise to questions by either side?

MR. MANDEL: No, Your Honor.

MR. RENSCH: No, Your Honor.

THE COURT: Thank you, you may step down. Call your next witness.

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