Criminal Justice Data
As noted earlier, while data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers the most comprehensive tally of Asian/Pacific Islander lethal victimization, it offers very limited data on the type of firearms used in homicides and no information on the factors surrounding the homicide (e.g., victim to offender relationship, circumstances). The FBI’s annual Supplementary Homicide Report (SHR) does report such information, albeit on a smaller number of incidents.
In 2019, the Supplementary Homicide Report contained data for 250 Asian/Pacific Islander homicide victims. This section details data unique to the SHR data set for these deaths.
Types of Firearms Used in Homicides
In 2019, where the type of weapon used in the homicide could be determined, for Asian/Pacific Islander victims, 56 percent of all gun homicides involved a handgun. In comparison, handguns were used in 63 percent of Black homicides involving a gun and 64 percent of white homicides involving a gun. Overall, handguns were the most prevalent firearm used in homicides in 2019 (63 percent).
Relationship of Homicide Victims to Offenders
For homicides in which the victim to offender relationship could be identified, Asian/Pacific Islander victims were more likely to be killed by a stranger (30 percent). In comparison, 23 percent of Black victims were killed by a stranger and 24 percent of white victims were killed by a stranger. Overall, 24 percent of homicide victims were killed by a stranger.
Of victims who knew their offenders, 37 percent of Asian/Pacific Islander victims were intimate acquaintances of the offender. In comparison, 25 percent of white victims and 17 percent of Black victims were intimate acquaintances of the offender. For the overall population, 22 percent of homicide victims were intimate acquaintances of the offender.
Circumstances of Homicides
For all races, for homicides in which the circumstances could be determined, 71 percent were not related to the commission of another felony. For Asian/Pacific Islanders, 68 percent of the homicides were not related to the commission of another felony. Seventy-one percent of white homicides and 70 percent of Black homicides were not related to the commission of another felony.
For all races, of the homicides not related to the commission of another felony, 52 percent involved arguments between the victim and the offender. Fifty-four percent of Asian/Pacific Islanders killed in homicides not related to the commission of another felony were killed during arguments (compared to 56 percent of Black victims and 49 percent of white victims).
Age of Homicide Victims
For all victims, 29 percent of homicide victims were age 24 or younger. For Asian/Pacific Islander victims, 22 percent of homicide victims were age 24 and younger. In comparison, 34 percent of Black homicide victims were age 24 and younger and 24 percent of white victims were age 24 and younger.
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