Relationship between the prevalence of guns & homicide rates in the US (2014)

TITLE: Examining the relationship between the prevalence of guns and homicide rates in the USA using a new and improved state-level gun ownership proxy
AUTHORS: Michael Siegel, Craig S Ross, Charles King

ABSTRACT: Determining the relationship between gun ownership levels and firearm homicide rates is critical to inform public health policy. Previous research has shown that state-level gun ownership, as measured by a widely used proxy, is positively associated with firearm homicide rates. A newly developed proxy measure that incorporates the hunting license rate in addition to the proportion of firearm suicides correlates more highly with state-level gun ownership. To corroborate previous research, we used this new proxy to estimate the association of state-level gun ownership with total, firearm, and non-firearm homicides. Using state-specific data for the years 1981–2010, we modelled these rates as a function of gun ownership level, controlling for potential confounding factors. We used a negative binomial regression model and accounted for clustering of observations among states. We found that state-level gun ownership as measured by the new proxy, is significantly associated with firearm and total homicides but not with non-firearm homicides.

Owning Guns Doesn’t Preserve Freedom (2013)

TITLE: Owning Guns Doesn’t Preserve Freedom (2013)
SOURCE: The Atlantic
AUTHOR: Casey Michel

NOTES: (1) Studies show there is very little correlation between heavily armed citizens & democracy around the world. (2) Juxtaposing the US with Switzerland, China, or Cuba (a handful of the 175 countries with data on the subject) is cherry-picking. Counterarguments are easy presented with the majority of countries. (Ghana, Indonesia, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Chile, Venezuela, Russia, etc.)

The gun owner next door: What you don’t know about the weapons in your neighborhood (2012)

TITLE: The gun owner next door: What you don’t know about the weapons in your neighborhood (2012)
AUTHOR(S): Dwight R. Worley

NOTES: Interactive maps are also available via

The gun control that works: no guns (2012)

TITLE: The gun control that works: no guns (2012)
SOURCE: The Economist

NOTES: Having few guns does mean that few people get shot. In 2008-2009, there were 39 fatal injuries from crimes involving firearms in England and Wales, with a population about one sixth the size of America’s. In America, there were 12,000 gun-related homicides in 2008.

On Firearm Ownership, Alcohol, & Risk-Related Behaviors (2011)

TITLE: Association between firearm ownership, firearm-related risk and risk reduction behaviours and alcohol-related risk behaviours
PUBLISHED IN: Injury Prevention 2011;17:422-427 doi:10.1136/ip.2010.031443
AUTHOR: Dr Garen J Wintemute, Violence Prevention Research Program, School of Medicine, UC-Davis,

ABSTRACT: Alcohol use and firearm ownership are risk factors for violent injury and death. To determine whether firearm ownership and specific firearm-related behaviours are associated with alcohol-related risk behaviours, the author conducted a cross-sectional study using Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System data for eight states in the USA from 1996 to 1997 (the most recent data available). Altogether, 15 474 respondents provided information on firearm exposure. After adjustment for demographics and state of residence, firearm owners were more likely than those with no firearms at home to have ≥5 drinks on one occasion (OR 1.32; 95% CI 1.16 to 1.50), to drink and drive (OR 1.79; 95% CI 1.34 to 2.39) and to have ≥60 drinks per month (OR 1.45; 95% CI 1.14 to 1.83). Heavy alcohol use was most common among firearm owners who also engaged in behaviours such as carrying a firearm for protection against other people and keeping a firearm at home that was both loaded and not locked away. The author concludes that firearm ownership (and specific firearm-related behaviours) are associated with alcohol-related risk behaviours.

State homicide victimization rates & household gun ownership (2007)

TITLE: State homicide victimization rates in the US in relation to survey measures of household gun ownership (2007)
SOURCE: Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
AUTHOR(S): Miller M, Hemenway D, Azrael D.

FINDINGS: Across states, more guns = more homicide, household firearms are a direct & indirect source of firearms used to kill Americans both in their homes & on their streets

Guns in the Home & Risk of a Violent Death (2004)

TITLE: Guns in the Home & Risk of a Violent Death in the Home: Findings from a National Study (2004)
AUTHOR(S): Linda L. Dahlberg, Robin M. Ikeda, and Marcie-jo Kresnow

RESEARCH QUESTION: does having a firearm in the home increases the risk of a violent death in the home & whether risk varies by storage practice, type of gun, or number of guns in the home.

FINDINGS: Regardless of storage practice, type of gun, or number of firearms in the home, having a gun in the home involves an increased risk of firearm homicide & firearm suicide in the home.

Firearm Availability & Homicide (2004)

TITLE: Firearm availability & homicide: A review of the literature (2004)
SOURCE: Aggression and Violent Behavior, 9(4), pp. 417-440.
AUTHOR(S): Lisa M. Hepburn ; David Hemenway

FINDINGS: (1) Where there are more guns there is more homicide; (2) males commit approximately 90% of all homicides & representing 75% of the victims; (3) households with firearms are at higher risk for homicide, particularly firearm homicide.

Rates of Household Firearm Ownership & Homicide Across US Regions & States, 1988–1997 (2002)

TITLE: Rates of Household Firearm Ownership & Homicide Across US Regions & States, 1988–1997 (2002)
SOURCE: American Journal of Public Health
AUTHORS: Matthew MillerDeborah Azrael, & David Hemenway

FINDINGS: Across states, more guns = more homicide, “ in areas where household firearm ownership rates were higher, a disproportionately large number of people died from homicide.”

More Guns, More Crime (2000)

TITLE: More Guns, More Crime
AUTHOR(S): Mark Duggan
SOURCE:  National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

FIELD(S):  Economics

RESEARCH FOCUS/QUESTION: Relationship between gun ownership & crime.
FINDINGS: (1) The gun ownership rate is positively correlated with the homicide rate; (2) The gun ownership rate has no significant bearing on rates of other crimes. (3) Concealed Carry laws do not reduce crime.

Characteristics of automatic or semi-automatic firearm ownership (1997)

TITLE: Characteristics of automatic or semi-automatic firearm ownership (1997)
SOURCE: American Journal of Public Health (AJPH), 87(2): 286–288
AUTHOR(S): D Hemenway and E Richardson

FINDINGS: (1) Owners of semi-automatic guns are more likely to binge drink & live in the South than other gun owners; (2) 60% of gun owners reported owning an automatic or semiautomatic firearm

NOTE: Data collected from 800 random telephone surveys.