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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 109420 Find in a Library
Title: Use of Firearms in Canadian Homicides 1972-1982: The Need for Gun Control
Journal: Canadian Journal of Criminology  Volume:30  Issue:1  Dated:(January 1988)  Pages:31-37
Author(s): C F Sproule; D J Kennett
Date Published: 1988
Page Count: 7
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English; French
Country: Canada
Annotation: We examined the consequences of abolishment of the death penalty for all homicides and the passing of strict control laws in late 1976 on Canadian homicides.
Abstract: More specifically, the standardized national rates for total homicides, homicides by firearms, and homicides by other methods for suspects and for victims for the years 1972-1976 and 1977-1982 were analyzed to determine whether the use of firearms in Canadian homicides has increased as predicted by supporters of capital punishment or has decreased as prophesied by advocates of gun control. Our findings revealed that while the mean standardized national rate for total homicide did not differ significantly between the 2-year block periods for either suspects or victims, significant decreases were found in the use of firearms for suspects and for victims since the legislative changes in gun control and capital punishment in late 1976. Even though there was a tendency for nonfirearm homicide to increase subsequent to gun control implementation, these findings become less worrisome when the relationship between suspect and victim standardized national rates are examined for firearm homicide versus nonfirearm homicide and for the year blocks 1972-1976 versus 1977-1982. For both blocks, a significantly greater proportion of victims per suspect was killed when firearms were the method of killing. In short, our findings firmly support the conclusion that gun control is beneficial. Although gun control may be influencing some suspects to kill by other methods, it is less likely for these suspects to kill multiple victims. (Author abstract modified)
Main Term(s): Gun Control
Index Term(s): Canada; Crime specific countermeasures; Homicide
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