States With the Most Gun Violence

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10. Georgia
> Firearm homicide deaths per 100,000: 4.57 (9th highest)
> Firearm aggravated assaults per 100,000: 58.64 (13th highest)
> Violent crime rate per 100,000: 373.2 (21st highest)
> Need permit to purchase handgun: No
> Governor: Nathan Deal (R)

In 2010, there were 4.57 firearm homicides for every 100,000 Georgia residents, the ninth highest rate of all states. Between 2001 and 2010, 1.78 women were killed by gun violence annually for every 100,000 residents, more than all but four other states.The state has very permissive gun laws. In 2011, the state scored just an 8 out of 100 in the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence’s scorecard. According to the Center for American Progress, the state’s poor guns laws allow for a high level of illegal gun exporting. There were 28.3 guns used in a crime exported from the state for every 100,000 residents, the 10th highest of all states. Meanwhile, 27.6% of crime guns were purchased in the past two years, the seventh highest of all states.

9. Arkansas
> Firearm homicide deaths per 100,000: 4.53 (10th highest)
> Firearm aggravated assaults per 100,000: 100.56 (3rd highest)
> Violent crime rate per 100,000: 480.9 (10th highest)
> Need permit to purchase handgun: No
> Governor: Mike Beebe (D)

Between 2001 and 2010, there were an average of 15.32 total firearm deaths per year — including homicides, suicides and accidents — in Arkansas for every 100,000 residents, the ninth highest of all states. Moreover, the state was one of just three to have more than 100 firearm-related aggravated assaults for every 100,000 residents in 2011. The state’s largest metropolitan area, Little Rock, had the seventh highest violent crime rate of all metropolitan areas. The state’s crime problem was broader than gun use. There were 3,754 property crimes per 100,000 residents in 2011, higher than any state except for South Carolina. The Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence awarded the state an F for its gun control laws.

Also Read: The Cities Where Violent Crime is Soaring

8. Missouri
> Firearm homicide deaths per 100,000: 5.59 (4th highest)
> Firearm aggravated assaults per 100,000: 88.90 (5th highest)
> Violent crime rate per 100,000: 447.4 (12th highest)
> Need permit to purchase handgun: No
> Governor: Jay Nixon (D)

There were 5.6 homicide deaths by firearms for every 100,000 Missouri residents in 2010, more than all but three other states. There were also 88.9 aggravated assaults with a firearm per 100,000 residents that year, more than all but four other states. Nearly 76% of murders in 2011 were committed with a firearm, higher than all but two other states. The Republican-dominated legislature has spent more time focusing on expanding gun rights rather than curbing them. One Missouri lawmaker, Rep. Mike Leara, recently introduced a bill that would make it a felony for anyone to propose legislation that “further restricts the right of an individual to bear arms, as set forth under the second amendment of the Constitution of the United States.”

7. New Mexico
> Firearm homicide deaths per 100,000: 3.69 (18th highest)
> Firearm aggravated assaults per 100,000: 87.26 (6th highest)
> Violent crime rate per 100,000: 567.5 (4th highest)
> Need permit to purchase handgun: No
> Governor: Susana Martinez (R)

Gun safety is a particular problem among children in New Mexico. Between 2001 and 2010, 3.12 children per 100,000 residents were killed annually by a firearm, higher than all but three other states. Moreover, there were more than 87 aggravated assaults with a firearm for every 100,000 residents, the sixth highest rate of all states. The state’s largest metropolitan area, Albuquerque, had one of the highest violent crime rates in the nation, with 662 violent crimes for every 100,000 people. New Mexico received an F from The Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence for its gun control and safety laws. However, unlike most states on this list, New Mexico legislators may be moving toward imposing tighter gun restrictions. In February, the New Mexico House of Representatives passed a bill to tighten background checks at gun shows, although the Senate did not vote on the measure by the end of the legislative session.

6. South Carolina
> Firearm homicide deaths per 100,000: 4.95 (7th highest)
> Firearm aggravated assaults per 100,000: 127.88 (2nd highest)
> Violent crime rate per 100,000: 571.9 (3rd highest)
> Need permit to purchase handgun: No
> Governor: Nikki R. Haley (R)

Between 2001 and 2010, nearly two women per every 100,000 residents were killed in a gun homicide in South Carolina, more than all but three other states. In 2011, there were 128 aggravated assaults with a firearm for every 100,000 residents, a higher rate than all states except for Tennessee. That year, South Carolina had 571.9 violent crimes for every 100,000 residents, higher than all but two other states. This included 6.8 murders and 438.4 aggravated assaults, the third and fourth highest rates in the United States, respectively. The state scored a D– from the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence for its gun control and safety laws. According to the Center for American Progress, the state’s weak gun laws result in the state having one of the highest rates of illegal gun trafficking.