U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

NCJRS Virtual Library

The Virtual Library houses over 235,000 criminal justice resources, including all known OJP works.
Click here to search the NCJRS Virtual Library

Effect of Perceived Risk and Victimization on Plans to Purchase a Gun for Self-Protection

NCJ Number
Journal of Criminal Justice Volume: 39 Issue: 4 Dated: July/August 2011 Pages: 312-319
Gary Kleck; Tomislav Kovandzic; Mark Saber; Will Hauser
Date Published
July 2011
8 pages
This study examined the effect that perceived risk and past victimization has on an individual's likelihood for purchasing a gun for self-protection.
The study found that the empirical evidence indicates that perceived risk of criminal victimization increased the probability of an individual purchasing a gun for self-protection, and that actual robbery victimization in the recent past also indicated an increase in the likelihood that an individual would purchase a gun for self-protection. This study examined whether the effect of perceived risk and past victimization affected an individual's likelihood of purchasing a gun for self-protection. Data for the study were obtained from the National Survey of Private Ownership of Firearms, a national telephone survey covering the private ownership and use of firearms by adults. Questions were asked of respondents regarding whether anyone in the household currently owned firearms, were planning on purchasing a firearm within the next 12 months for protection against crime, and the most important reason for purchasing a firearm. The findings from the study indicate that positive associations between crime rates and gun ownership levels may reflect the effect of crime rates on gun ownership levels as opposed to the reverse situation. A review of previous research on this issue is also included in the article, along with a discussion of future research. Tables and references


No download available