Gun Violence by the Numbers

November 30, 2015

Everytown is committed to using the most comprehensive, up-to-date sources of data to measure America’s unprecedented levels of gun violence. Learn more by exploring the stats below.


Data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that on an average day, 91 Americans are killed with guns.

To calculate this, Everytown relies on a five-year-average of data from the CDC, whose National Vital Statistics System"Fatal Injury Reports," Injury Prevention & Control: Data & Statistics (WISQARS), accessed December 21 2015, http://1.usa.gov/1plXBux contains the most comprehensive national data, currently available through 2014.

View CDC data on people killed by guns each year

Homicide Suicide Unintentional Legal Intervention Undetermined
Intent
Total
2010 11,078 19,392 606 344 252 31,672
2011 11,068 19,990 591 454 248 32,351
2012 11,622 20,666 548 471 256 33,563
2013 11,208 21,175 505 467 281 33,636
2014 10,945 21,334 586 464 270 33,599
Annual Average 11,184 20,511 567 440 261 32,964
Daily Average 31 56 2 1 1 91

More Americans are injured with guns than killed.

The number of Americans injured with firearms dwarfs the number who are killed, although data to measure non-fatal shootings are less reliable. The CDC’s National Electronic Injury Surveillance System estimates the number of annual non-fatal firearm injuries based on reports from a sample of hospital emergency departments: over the last five years, there were more than 200 non-fatal firearm injuries each day."Non-Fatal Injury Reports," Injury Prevention & Control: Data & Statistics (WISQARS), accessed June 29, 2015 http://1.usa.gov/1qo12RL.

View full data set on non-fatal firearm injuries

Year Non-Fatal
Firearm Injuries
2010 73,505
2011 73,883
2012 81,396
2013 84,258
2014 81,034
Annual Average 78,815
Daily Average 216

Nearly two-thirds (62 percent) of firearm deaths in the U.S. are suicides.

Of the 164,821 firearm deaths in the US from 2010 to 2014 (the most recent five years of data available), 102,557 (or 62 percent) were suicides. To calculate this total, Everytown relies on CDC data regarding fatal injury by intent.“Fatal Injury Reports," Injury Prevention & Control: Data & Statistics (WISQARS), accessed December 21, 2015, http://1.usa.gov/1plXBux.

Seven children and teens (age 19 or under) are killed with guns in the U.S. on an average day.

Rates of firearm injury death increase rapidly after age 13.“Fatal Injury Reports," Injury Prevention & Control: Data & Statistics (WISQARS), accessed December 21, 2015, http://1.usa.gov/1plXBux. And unintentional shootings of children and teens are underreported in the CDC data, possibly because of the difficulty of characterizing a child’s intent after he or she has killed himself or a playmate with a firearm. In research released in 2013, Everytown documented 100 unintentional gun deaths of children 14 and under, 61 percent more than reflected by CDC data.Everytown for Gun Safety, Innocents Lost: A Year of Unintentional Child Deaths, June 2014, available at http://every.tw/1iFElcV Everytown also tracks unintentional shootings involving children, which occur every 34 hours, on average.Everytown for Gun Safety, Not An Accident – Index, http://every.tw/1GMK8np, and School Shootings since Newtown, http://every.tw/1eh50vh.

View full data-set on children and teens killed with guns

Population Total
Firearm
Deaths
Firearm
Homicides
2010 83,267,556 2,711 1,773
2011 82,840,576 2,703 1,651
2012 82,503,131 2,694 1,664
2013 82,296,428 2,465 1,410
2014 82,135,602 2,549 1,455
Total 413,043,293 13,122 7,953
Annual
Average
82,608,659 2,624 1,591
Daily
Average
N/A 7 4

In an average month, 51 women are shot to death by intimate partners in the U.S.

And more than half of all women killed by intimate partners in the U.S. are killed with guns.Federal Bureau of Investigation, Supplementary Homicide Reports, 2009-13, available at http://bit.ly/1yVxm4K. Over the last five years of available data, 55% of women killed by intimate partners (including same-sex partners) were killed with guns.

View full data set on gun homicides of women by a current or former intimate partner

Year FBI Supplementary
Homicide Reports
Florida Department of
Law Enforcement
Total
2009 595 61 656
2010 613 48 661
2011 553 61 614
2012 529 58 587
2013 519 41 560
Total 2,809 269 3,078
Annual Average 561.8 53.8 615.6
Monthly Average 46.8 4.5 51

America’s gun homicide rate is more than 25 times the average of other high-income countries.

An analysis of gun homicide rates in developed countries— those considered “high-income” by the World Bank — found that the United States accounted for 46 percent of the population but 82 percent of the gun deaths.Erin Grinshteyn and David Hemenway, "Violent Death Rates: The US Compared with Other High-income OECD Countries, 2010," American Journal of Medicine, 2015. The World Bank defines a high-income country as one with a gross national income per capita greater than $12,736. The study analyzed data from populous (>1 million inhabitants), high-income countries that were members of the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) in 2010. Additionally, the study excluded Iceland and Luxembourg from the broader OECD for having very small populations, and also excluded Greece and Switzerland for not using detailed ICD-10 codes.

Background checks are a central component of America's efforts to keep guns from criminals: since their inception, they have blocked nearly 3 million gun sales to prohibited people.

According to a study by the Department of Justice, between 1994 and 2014, federal, state, and local agencies conducted background checks on more than 180 million firearm applications and denied 2.82 million gun sales to prohibited people. Assuming a similar rate of the period 2015-16, to date the background check system has likely blocked nearly 3 million firearm sales to prohibited people.US Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, Background Checks for Firearm Transfers, 2013-14 - Statistical Tables, by Jennifer C. Varberg, Ronald J. Frandsen, Joseph M. Durst, Trent D. Buskirk, and Allina D. Lee (June 2016), http://bit.ly/2av5tvL.

Black men are 14 times more likely than non-hispanic white men to be shot and killed with guns.

Black Americans make up 14 percent of the U.S. population U.S. Census Bureau. 2010. http://www.census.gov/prod/cen2010/briefs/c2010br-06.pdf but are victims of more than half of all gun homicides.“Fatal Injury Reports," Injury Prevention & Control: Data & Statistics (WISQARS), accessed January 25, 2015, http://1.usa.gov/1plXBux.

View more on gun homicides and race in America

Note: This figure has been calculated using 2010-2014 data and shows gun homicide rates for non-Hispanic white and non-Hispanic black men.

When a gun is present in a situation of domestic violence, it increases the risk the woman will be killed fivefold.

A case-control study of 11 cities found that in a domestic violence situation, the perpetrator’s access to a gun increased the odds of femicide by more than five times (adjust OR=5.44, 95% CI = 2.89, 10.22).Jacqueline C. Campbell, Daniel Webster, and Jane Koziol-McLain, "Risk Factors for Femicide in Abusive Relationships: Results from a Multisite Case Control Study," American Journal of Public Health 93, no. 7 (June 2003): http://1.usa.gov/1osjCet.

Note on Data Sources

Both the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the FBI collect data on firearm homicides — the former from medical examiners and the latter from local law enforcement. Each data set has distinct advantages and flaws. The CDC’s National Vital Statistics System records a higher percentage of all firearm deaths but fails to capture details about their circumstances, including the relationship of the perpetrator to the victim. This makes it unsuitable for measuring gun violence between people of certain relationships.

In contrast, the FBI’s Supplementary Homicide Reports (SHR) include details on the perpetrator and murder weapon but are more likely to be missing records because the FBI relies on police departments to voluntarily submit their homicide data on an annual basis. Despite these gaps, SHR data are utilized widely in the criminology community. The SHR do not include data from the state of Florida. Everytown obtained data for that state directly from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Women killed by former dating partners (as opposed to current dating partners) are not categorized in the Florida data and are not included.James Alan Fox, “Missing Data Problems in the SHR: Imputing Offender and Relationship Characteristics,” Homicide Studies 8, no. 214 (2004); and Catherine Barber and David Hemenway, “Underestimates of Unintentional Firearm Fatalities: Comparing Supplementary Homicide Report Data with the National Vital Statistics System,” Injury Prevention 8 (2002).