For Release: Thursday, May 31, 2012
Washington, DC–At least 447 people, including 12 law enforcement officers, have been killed in incidents not ruled self-defense involving private citizens legally allowed to carry concealed handguns according to the May update of the Violence Policy Center’s (VPC) Concealed Carry Killers on-line resource (http://concealedcarrykillers.org).
VPC Legislative Director Kristen Rand states, “This tragic body count is only a fraction of the number of innocent people who have paid with their lives for the gun lobby’s vision of an America where every person is armed at all times. The only beneficiaries of lax concealed carry laws are the gun lobby and the industry it represents.”
The Violence Policy Center’s Concealed Carry Killers database documents 334 incidents in 32 states since May 2007. In more than three quarters of the incidents (262) the concealed carry killer has already been convicted (92), committed suicide (163), or was killed in the incident (seven). Of the 63 cases still pending, the vast majority (54) of concealed carry killers have been charged with criminal homicide, four were deemed incompetent to stand trial, and five incidents are still under investigation. An additional nine incidents were fatal unintentional shootings involving the gun of the concealed handgun permit holder. Twenty of the incidents were mass shootings, resulting in the deaths of 89 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 334 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.”
About the Violence Policy Center
The Violence Policy Center is a national educational organization working to stop gun death and injury. Follow the VPC on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.