For Release: Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Washington, DC–At least 370 people, including 11 law enforcement officers, have been killed in incidents not ruled self-defense involving private citizens legally allowed to carry concealed handguns according to the July/August update of the Violence Policy Center’s (VPC) Concealed Carry Killers on-line resource (http://concealedcarrykillers.org).
VPC Legislative Director Kristen Rand states, “The known death toll from lax concealed carry laws continues to mount. The real death count is undoubtedly far higher but the gun lobby blocks efforts to comprehensively track homicides and other crimes committed by individuals legally carrying concealed handguns. The public deserves to know the truth. The Violence Policy Center urges that information on crimes committed by private citizens legally allowed to carry concealed handguns be collected and analyzed through the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Uniform Crime Reports.”
The Violence Policy Center’s Concealed Carry Killers database documents 266 incidents in 31 states since May 2007. In more than three quarters of the incidents (209) the concealed carry killer has already been convicted (73), committed suicide (130), or was killed in the incident (six). Of the 53 cases still pending, the vast majority (43) of concealed carry killers have been charged with criminal homicide, three were deemed incompetent to stand trial, and seven incidents are still under investigation. Four incidents were fatal unintentional shootings involving the gun of the concealed handgun permit holder. Nineteen of the incidents were mass shootings, resulting in the deaths of 84 victims.
Because most state systems that allow the carrying of concealed handguns in public by private citizens release little data about crimes committed by them, the primary source for Concealed Carry Killers is published news reports. It is likely that the actual number of fatal incidents involving citizens legally allowed to carry concealed handguns is far higher.
A detailed summary of each of the 266 incidents is available at http://concealedcarrykillers.org, clicking on each category leads to a state-by-state breakout for the incidents with current known status. To review all deaths involving Concealed Carry Killers, click on “Total People Killed by Concealed Carry Killers.” While the incident summaries of the few Concealed Carry Killers who were found not guilty or were eventually not charged are listed on the site, those numbers are not included in the Violence Policy Center’s totals.