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Guns Used in Crime

NCJ Number
Date Published
July 1995
7 pages
M W Zawitz
Publication Series
Publication Type
This report presents statistics on the use of guns in crime; of almost 2 million violent crimes of murder, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault reported in 1993, about 582,000 were committed with firearms.
The research reported here shows that 70 percent of the murders committed in 1993 were committed with firearms. Although most crime is not committed with guns, most gun crime is committed with handguns. Reports indicate that there are 223 million guns legally available to the general public; in addition, stolen guns, 60 percent of which are handguns, provide a ready source of weapons for criminals. Over 75 percent of guns traced by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms in 1994 were handguns, and almost a third were less than 3 years old. Inmates reported they prefer concealable, large-caliber guns. Juvenile offenders seem more likely to possess firearms than adults. Most guns used in homicides are large-caliber revolvers, but the number of large-caliber semiautomatic guns is increasing. 8 tables, 1 figure, and 18 references
Date Created: December 17, 2009