In 1992, 5,262 of five to nineteen-year-olds in the United States died from gunshot wounds. Of these:
- A child under the age of 15 in the US is 15 times more likely to be killed by gunfire than a child growing up in Northern Ireland.(2)
- A child dies of gunshot wounds every two hours in the US while a police officer is killed by a gun every five days.(3)
- The overall firearm-related death rate among US children less than 15 years of age is nearly 12 times higher when compared to children in 25 industrialized countries (4)
- The FBI's stolen gun file contains over 2 million reports, 60% of which are reports of stolen handguns, while handguns represent only one third of all firearms privately owned in the US. (5)
- The number of murders committed by handguns has risen steadily since 1985, paralleling the increase in the rate of firearm production. (6)
- Of the 20,043 reported homicides in 1995, 82 percent were committed with a firearm. Nearly 56% of all firearm-related homicides were committed with a handgun in 1995. (7)
- and the average cost of a patient with firearm-related injuries is estimated to cost $32,000 per hospital admission.(12)
- African American males age 15-24 are most at risk of firearm-related death. If the rest of the US population were being killed at the same rate as young African American males, over 460,000 people would die of gunshots every year.(13)
(1) National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. (1995). Injury Mortality: National Summary of Injury Mortality Data, 1986-1992. Atlanta Georgia: Centers for Disease control and Prevention.
(2-4) The State of America's Children Yearbook 1994, Children's Defense Fund, Washington, DC.
(5) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "Rates of Homicide, Suicide, and Firearm-related death among children in 26 industrialized countries." Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports, February 7, 1997.
(6) US Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. Guns Used in Crime: Firearms, Crime and Criminal Justice-Selected Findings. 1995.
(7) Wintemute, GJ. Firearms as a cause of death in the United States, 1920-1982. Journal of Trauma. 1987.
(8) Crime in the United States 1995, Uniform Crime Reports, US Department of Justice (Washington, DC).
(9) Kellerman, AL et al. Suicide in the house in relation to gun ownership. New England Journal of Medicine. August 12, 1992.
(10) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Deaths resulting from firearm- and motor-vehicle-related injuries: United States, 1968-1991. Vol. 4, 1994
(11) US Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. Firearm Injury from Crime. April, 1996.
(12) Wintemute, GJ et al. Initial and Subsequent Hospital Costs of Firearm Injuries. Journal of Trauma. October, 1992.
(13) Kizer, KW et al. Hospitalization charges, costs, and income for firearm-related injuries at a university trauma center. JAMA. June, 1995.
(14) National Center for Health Statistics. Advance data from vital and health statistics, no. 242. 1994.