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Mass Shootings Rare, Government Study Says

Friday, August 7, 2015

Mass Shootings Rare, Government Study Says

A new study by the Congressional Research Service, by far the most thorough and comprehensive of its type to date, confirms that mass shootings continue to be rare in the United States. While Michael Bloomberg’s TheTrace.org website says that mass shootings happen “more often than they used to,” renown criminologist James Alan Fox, of Northeastern University, whose extensive analysis of mass shootings is discussed at length in the CRS study, says that the study shows “there is no solid trend” in the number of such crimes and “No matter how you cut it, there’s no epidemic.”

The study, “Mass Murder with Firearms: Incidents and Victims, 1999-2013,” defines a “mass shooting” as “a multiple homicide incident in which four or more victims are murdered with firearms, within one event, in one or more locations in close proximity.” Because the underlying circumstances of mass shootings vary widely, the study categorizes such crimes as family-related, felony-related (e.g., robberies and gang shootouts), and those taking place in public locations, such as schools, restaurants and houses of worship.

By CRS’ count, 71 percent of mass shootings and 79 percent of their fatal victims over the 15-year period 1999-2013 were family- or felony-related. Public incidents, while accounting for the vast majority of mass shootings covered by the news media, accounted for only 21 percent of such incidents and 29 percent of their victims.

Anti-gun groups and their allies in the news media portray mass shootings as common events that place the public at extreme risk. However, between 1999 and 2013, mass shootings covered by the CRS study accounted for a microscopic 0.004 percent of all deaths, about 0.66 percent of all murder victims, and less than one fiftieth the number of non-firearm murder victims in the United States. Stated another way, during the same 15-year period, the chance against a person being killed in a mass shooting in the United States was about 517,000:1.   

Finally, while anti-gun groups would like to portray mass shootings as being most often committed with “assault weapons,” the CRS study found that between 1999 and 2013, less than 10 percent of mass shootings were committed with any firearm capable of using a detachable magazine holding more than 10 rounds.

With other data showing that most mass shootings are committed by individuals who acquire guns by passing background checks or by illegal means, the CRS study adds to the body of evidence against any expansion of firearm-related background checks systems on the basis of mass shootings’ frequency or trend.

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Friday, May 19, 2017

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The Supreme Court of North Dakota confirmed this week that simply possessing a handgun while on one’s own private property cannot support a finding of "disorderly conduct" under the state’s disorderly conduct restraining order law. ...

Illinois: House Committee Passes Bill to Close Local Gun Dealers

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Illinois: House Committee Passes Bill to Close Local Gun Dealers

The House Judiciary Committee passed Senate Bill 1657 by a 7-6 vote.

Washington: NRA Files Amicus Brief in Challenge to Kitsap County Anti-Gun Ordinance

Monday, May 22, 2017

Washington: NRA Files Amicus Brief in Challenge to Kitsap County Anti-Gun Ordinance

Last week, attorneys on behalf of the NRA filed an amicus brief in Kitsap County v. Kitsap Rifle and Revolver Club (Kitsap II), the case which challenges Kitsap County’s firearm discharge ban and range licensing scheme.  Kitsap Rifle and ...

Maryland: Governor Hogan Signs Apprentice Hunting Legislation into Law

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Maryland: Governor Hogan Signs Apprentice Hunting Legislation into Law

Today, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan signed House Bill 1427 into law.

Nevada: Governor Sandoval Signs AB 118!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Nevada: Governor Sandoval Signs AB 118!

Today, May 22, Governor Brian Sandoval signed important pro-gun legislation, Assembly Bill 118, into law.  AB 118, sponsored by Assemblyman Skip Daly, will allow members of the military and those who have received an honorable ...

California: AB 424 Passes Assembly - Appropriations Committees to Consider Suspense Items

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

California: AB 424 Passes Assembly - Appropriations Committees to Consider Suspense Items

Friday, May 26th is the deadline for the fiscal committees to pass bills to the floor from the chamber of origin.  On Thursday, May 25, the Senate AppropriationsCommittee is scheduled to consider Senate Bill 464 and Senate Bill 497. ...

Kansas: Senate Committee Passes Gun Free Zone Legislation, Again

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Kansas: Senate Committee Passes Gun Free Zone Legislation, Again

Last week, the Senate Committee of the Whole referred an amended version of House Bill 2278 back to the Senate Ways and Means Committee.

Abbott Signs Senate Bill 16, Bringing Texas License To Carry Fees Down to Among Lowest in Nation

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Thursday, May 25, 2017

Abbott Signs Senate Bill 16, Bringing Texas License To Carry Fees Down to Among Lowest in Nation

The National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) today applauded Texas Gov. Greg Abbott for signing into law NRA-backed legislation that will make license to carry fees in Texas among the lowest in the ...

California: Don’t Miss our May 25th Webinar to Discuss the Newest DOJ Draft “Assault Weapons” Regulations

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

California: Don’t Miss our May 25th Webinar to Discuss the Newest DOJ Draft “Assault Weapons” Regulations

Tomorrow, Thursday, May 25, at 12:00 pm (PT), NRA’s legal team will be hosting a free webinar to discuss the recently submitted “assault weapon” regulations.   

Illinois: Last Chance to Save your Local Gun Dealer!

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Illinois: Last Chance to Save your Local Gun Dealer!

The Illinois House of Representatives may consider Senate Bill 1657, legislation that could put your local gun dealer out of business, at any time! It is imperative that you contact your state Representative IMMEDIATELY and ...

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NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.