Gun use more likely in suicides than homicides

New research from the University of California, Davis shows that fewer Americans are being shot and killed in homicides, but more--primarily older white men--are using guns to commit suicide.

The new research, published in the Annual Review of Public Health, analyzed US gun violence statistics from 2003 to 2012 and determined that there were 313,045 gun deaths. It found that the rates of suicides from gun use have exceeded gun homicides over the past 30 years, but the gap has been widening since 2006, with homicides decreasing and suicides rising.

In 2012, 64 percent of gun deaths were suicides, up from 57 percent in 2006. The largest number of deaths occurred among middle-aged or older white men and 90 percent of those deaths were suicides.  By contrast, the homicide rate was particularly high among young African-American men. In 2012, 89 of every 100,000 black men ages 20 to 24 died from gunshots, compared to four of every 100,000 white men of the same age.

The study also found that during the past decade, guns, on average, killed 82 Americans a day--50 from self-inflicted wounds and 32 who were shot by other people.

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Sourced from: Reuters, Gun suicides far more common than homicides