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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 97099 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Armed Criminal in America - A Survey of Incarcerated Felons
Author(s): James D. Wright; Peter H. Rossi
Corporate Author: University of Massachusetts
Social and Demographic Research Institute
United States of America
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 52
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
Washington, DC 20531
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
University of Massachusetts
Amherst, MA 01002
US Dept of Justice NIJ Pub
Washington, DC 20531
Grant Number: 82-IJ-CX-0001
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Document: PDF
Dataset: DATASET 1
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A sample of adult male felons incarcerated in State prisons was studied to determine the roles of firearms in the lives of violent criminals and how criminals obtain the firearms they use to commit their crimes.
Abstract: Between August 1982 and January 1983, 1,874 felons in 11 State prisons in 10 States completed self-administered questionnaires focusing on their acquisition and use of guns before their imprisonment. The men were all serving time for a felony conviction dating after January 1, 1979. The States' and felons' willingness to participate were the only selection criteria, except in the 3 sites in which the eligible population was over 400 and in which random sampling was therefore used. Analysis indicated that three-quarters of the men had owned at least one gun in their life and just over half of the men were armed during the crime for which they were in prison. Having and carrying firearms was a central part of their daily existence, in part because of their concern for survival in a hostile and violent world. Gun theft had a critical role in the firearms supply for these criminals; from 40 to 70 percent of weapons used in committing crimes were stolen or borrowed from others. Only about one-fifth of the most recent weapons were purchased from legitimate retail sources. Findings called into question some commonly advocated policies about firearms purchasing regulations and indicated that these policies may prove to have negative and unwanted side effects. Data tables and a bibliography listing 40 references are supplied.
Index Term(s): Firearms acts; Gun Control; Illicit firearms; Violent inmates
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