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Latest Gun Violence Research: States With Background Checks Have Fewer Domestic Violence Homicides, Fewer Police Killed By Guns


NOTE: This press release is from 2015 and is now out of date. More recent research on background checks can be found here.

Everytown for Gun Safety today released updated figures from its leading research on the state-level impact of background check laws. The research, which now examines a broader dataset over a longer time period, reveals that states that require background checks on all handgun sales see fewer domestic violence and law enforcement homicides than were previously measured or reported. The analysis updates Everytown’s leading research in three key areas: domestic violence homicide, suicide, and law enforcement homicide.

In the states that require background checks for unlicensed, “private” handgun sales, which includes 14 states and Washington D.C.:

Domestic Violence: Women are 46 percent less likely to be shot to death by intimate partners than in states that do not.
Suicide: Controlling for population, there are 48 percent fewer gun suicides than in states that do not.
Law Enforcement: Law enforcement officers are 48 percent less likely to be killed with handguns than in states that do not.

“This research makes it clear that police officers and domestic violence victims are safer from gun violence in states with background checks,” said John Feinblatt, President of Everytown for Gun Safety. “Everytown will continue to push for sensible measures, state by state, until our country’s patchwork of gun laws has been repaired because the numbers make it clear that lives are on the line.”

More detailed information about Everytown’s research on this topic – and others – can be found at