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NCJ Number: 156321 Find in a Library
Title: Weapon Involvement in Home Invasion Crimes
Journal: Journal of the American Medical Association  Volume:273  Issue:22  Dated:(June 14, 1995)  Pages:1759-1762
Author(s): A L Kellermann; L Westphal; L Fischer; B Harvard
Date Published: 1995
Page Count: 4
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The use of firearms to resist home invasion crimes is explored.
Abstract: This article discusses the results of an analysis of the offense reports of the Atlanta, Georgia, Police Department between June 1 and August 31, 1994 to identify every case of unwanted entry into an occupied, single- family dwelling in which a firearm was used to defend against the invasion. Cases of sexual assault and incidents that involved cohabitants were excluded. A total of 198 cases were identified. The analysis revealed that half of the cases involved forced entry into the home. The victim and offender were acquainted in one- third of the cases. A firearm was carried by one or more offenders in 32 cases. Seven offenders carried knives. In 42 percent of the cases, the offender fled without confronting the victim. Victims who avoided confrontation were more likely to lose property, but much less likely to be injured than those who were confronted by the offender. Resistance was attempted in 62 cases, but the odds of injury were not significantly affected by the method of resistance. Forty cases resulted in one or more victims being injured, including six who were shot. No one died. Three victims employed a firearm in self- protection. All three escaped injury, but one lost property. The authors conclude that while a minority of home invasion crimes result in injury, measures that increase the difficulty of forced entry or enhance the likelihood of detection could be useful to prevent these crimes. They caution that although firearms are often kept in the home for protection, they are rarely used for this purpose. Suggestions for future research are presented. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Victims of Crime
Index Term(s): Criminology; Firearms; Police; Statistics
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