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FBI 2019 Crime Report: Violent Crimes Down, Justifiable Homicides Up

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The rate of estimated violent crimes dropped slightly in 2019 compared to 2018, while the known incidences of armed citizens defending themselves with a firearm increased, according to the FBI Uniform Crime Report (UCR) for 2019.

Violent crimes reported in the UCR include murder, rape (based on a legacy definition), robbery and aggravated assault. Together, the total of these in 2019 was about 1.2 million, with a rate of 366.7 per 100,000 people.

Of these violent crimes, the totals for murder/non-negligent manslaughter remained nearly the same for 2019 as 2018, with roughly 16,000 cases and a rate of 5 per 100,000 people.


2019 FBI Uniform Crime Report, Table 1 (Highlight Added)

Of these 16,000-plus murders, it is notable that a grand total of 364 of them used a rifle of any type, once again highlighting the senselessness of a ban on popular semi-automatic rifles like the AR-15. People were killed at nearly twice that amount by hands, fists, feet, etc.

However, while the rate of violent crimes has been declining, the FBI’s “crime clock” statistics shows that a violent crime still occurred every 26 seconds in 2019.

2019 FBI Uniform Crime Report, Crime Clock Figure (Full Report Download)

Accordingly, Americans armed themselves more in 2019, as indicated by the number of background checks last year and the numbers of concealed-carry holders.

The number of felons fatally shot during the commission of a felony—that is, justifiable homicides by Armed Citizens—numbered 334 in the 2019 UCR, up from 317 cases in 2018. (The number of crimes prevented by the mere presence of an armed citizen remains unknown, though researchers have estimated anywhere from 80,000 to 2.5 million possible crimes deterred annually.)


2019 FBI Uniform Crime Report, Table 15 (Highlight Added)

Meanwhile, gun purchasing numbers for 2020 will almost certainly smash all records, amid concerns about the pandemic and personal safety. The FBI UCR for this year may be very interesting reading when it comes out next September!

Article by Mel Dixon

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