Indianapolis Public Safety Director Troy Riggs (courtesy gannet.com)

“Ninety-two percent of all of our homicide suspects have a criminal past.” – Indianapolis Public Safety Director Troy Riggs quoted in Indy ranks in top ten for murder [via fox59.com] [h/t  DC]

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39 Responses to Quote of the Day: “Gun Violence” In Shannon Watts’ Home Town Edition

  1. That does it, this makes me really REALLY angry. We should outlaw homicides, make them illegal. Then these criminals, the ones who don’t care about laws would think twice about killing someone…..I should run for office….

    • You mean add additional penalties for those who use a gun in commission of a violent crime? why, that would make too much common sense

      • Why? What does using a gun to commit a violent crime do to make the crime worse?

        I’ve been around rape, robbery and attempted murder victims. These are crimes against people, and the tool used by the perpetrator did not increase or lessen their trauma.

        Hmmm. I don’t recall anyone saying, “Gee, I’m glad he only raped me with a KNIFE and didn’t use a gun.”

        It’s called “armed robbery,” not “gun robbery.” No need for extra special charges with one form of “arm” vs another. The victim is just as victimized either way.

        As for murder…the obvious answer is: dead is dead, no matter the weapon used. Makes no logical sense to focus on the tool.

        The problem in violent crime is the criminal. A person willing to harm another (such as a robber, for example) is not a different threat to society because they choose to use a gun vs a knife. Changing the penalties around based on weapon is a deflection tactic used by people that simply do not understand what is really going on in a violent encounter.

        • So, using a gun for violent crime, and the results of a criminal twitch of a finger, no easier for a criminal than the methods you note? I would think law abiding gun owners would wish to distance themselves from those who would like to use a gun for violent crimes, and make this an especially egregious and fearsome method of committing a violent crime, and see those who chose to do so punished an even greater degree (as on top of penalties for methods you note), but, perhaps my view is highly faulted, and you are correct. Ok, no problems, carry on as we are, all is well.

        • @Jjmmyjonga

          I’m quite sure that law-abiding PEOPLE would wish to distance themselves from criminals, period. Like JR said, the tool is irrelevant… Crime is crime, and violent crime is crime against the most precious of property.

        • JjmmyJonga–I actually kind of see your point. I can imagine a malevolent little pipsqueak reasoning, “hey, I’m not stout enough to get close-in to a victim to use a knife or club, I’d rather use a gun”. What I can’t see happening very much is the same guy reasoning, ” I am ready to risk up to capital punishment to murder someone, (or up to life for raping someone, or whatever) but I don’t want to risk an extra 10 years on my sentence to use a gun to do it, so I guess I just won’t do it”.

        • The idea (I think) is to discourage the use of guns in the commission of crimes. Generally this has been mostly more of the anti gun grey matter nose drip you get from anti politicians, however to my knowledge it actually has led to a decrease in the usage of firearms by criminals in places like Hawaii. Normally it doesn’t make much difference, however if it were combined with easy to get concealed carry permits and an armed general populous, it might help ensure that the potential victim has an advantage over an attacker. But it’s fairly flimsy reasoning with out much data on the subject.

          It would be fairly interesting to see what would happen if the use of a firearm in the commission of any crime against another person automatically caused an upgrade from “armed robbery” to “attempted murder.” However I can see it not working also. I can also see it used against legit concealed carriers if they get in a fight or commit a minor crime while carrying, but not using the firearm in the crime at all. A hubris induced fistfight could become “attempted murder” even if a gun was never drawn or brandished.

      • Making special penalties for using a firearm helps demonize firearms. It takes the focus away from the actual crime – the physical act against a person and/or property – and inappropriately focuses on the criminal’s choice of weapon.

        Get rid of all the extra “with a firearm” penalties that exist, and just lock the violent guy up. And keep him locked up.

        • Agree, but why not add extra punishment for those that would use an object many of enjoy owning for horrible misdeeds to hurt others? This has nothing to do with us law-abiding citizens enjoying our guns. Guns are a very unique “tool” if used by violent criminals, in that great harm can be caused easily, to many, in an instant, and hence why many violent criminals seek to posess/use them. This needs to stop, and one positive would be to have these thugs jailed for longer periods when caught. The mere appearance of a gun in a criminals hand brings fear and compliance to victims. I would like to see additional prison time for those who choose to use guns criminally to hurt/control/damage/rob innocent people, sending a message that you will be out of society even longer if you use guns for such evil purposes. That’s my opinion.

        • Agree, but why not add extra punishment for those that would use an object many of enjoy owning for horrible misdeeds to hurt others?

          So, stiffer penalties for crimes committed using all of the following inanimate objects that fall under the above description?

          – Automobiles
          – Baseball bats
          – Golf clubs
          – Chef’s knives

        • Singling out firearms because they are “very unique tools” imprints on to people’s minds that misusing a gun is worthy of special punishment. While I can understand wanting that, I think any potential benefits outweigh the drawbacks, and that special punishment isn’t appropriate for picking a particular weapon.

          I don’t want to have a “criminal who robs/rapes/assaults” with a firearm punished more or less than a “criminal who robs/rapes/assaults with a baseball bat.” Or a knife. Or any other tool.

          Yes, guns can be used to inflict harm more easily – a bad guy doesn’t have to get within arm’s length to inflict damage. But they can also be used to defend oneself more effectively for the same reason.

          I think the message people would get would be that “guns are so bad they get special penalties” … and that is NOT a good message to send. It’s also inappropriate, because the “criminal act” – the act with a victim – is not the bad guy choosing what weapon to use – it’s the bad guy committing the violent act.

          If there’s a penalty for misuse of a firearm, should there not also be penalties for misuse of baseball bats / knives / swords / bricks / etc? If someone uses their fists to inflict damage instead of a weapon, why should they be punished less than someone who uses a brick or a blade or a gun? Or (as Chip Bennett mentioned) an automobile or golf club? The more that guns are seen as “special” the more that some people will push to have them treated differently than all other weapons, including restrictions/prohibitions for all people.

          The actual crime is the act of violence, not the choice of implement used to commit the violence.

  2. They must all be stabbings, beatings, chokings, burnings, poisonings and other non-firearm related homicides, right? I mean if felons are prohibited persons and all…

    • But that’s why we need universal registra.. I mean universal background checks. Those criminals would have to call the FBI when they bought a gun, and then we’d catch em!
      Genius Level 9000

  3. It would really bother me if she happened to be part of those stats. Who would be able to lie for Bloomburg and company? Boy oh boy that would really be a shame.

  4. “Facts” from the article:

    135 murders, 151 homicides
    44% of the victims and suspects are between 15-24 years old
    “Ninety-two percent of all of our homicide suspects have a criminal past,” said Riggs. “Eighty-three percent of our homicide victims have a criminal past.”
    Riggs and IMPD Chief Rick Hite are concentrating on heavy patrols and enforcement in six hot zones that represent an outsized proportion of the city’s crime problem.
    47,000 of our residents living in areas that are responsible for 27% of our homicides and 30% of our non-fatal shootings.

    Sounds like they don’t have a “gun” problem. They have a drug dealing and gang problem. But you know, guns is so much easier to blame. No chance of being called insensitive or privileged if you deride firearms versus behavior and lifestyle choices.

  5. “For every gun murder victim there is in Indianapolis, there are four shooting victims who survive.

    The study shows that 51% of the victims refuse to cooperate with police, a five percent increase over the year before and a chief reason why the non-fatal shooting rate has climbed.”

    The “victims” do not cooperate with police… By victims you mean gang members, street thugs, and drug dealers?

    Yeah, those folks don’t pride themselves on cooperating with police.

    I’m sure there a good people caught up in these stats, but I’ll bet my next pay check the bulk are drug and gang related.

    • “For every gun murder victim there is in Indianapolis, there are four shooting victims who survive.”

      Sounds like the local hospitals are pretty good at emergency treatment of gunshot wounds with an 80% survival rate. And how did they get so good? practice, practice, practice…..

      • I had a TSGT who treated more gunshot wounds while stationed at Wright-Patt and working at a Dayton hospital than when he deployed to Iraq.

  6. And yet, any laws they want to pass directly impact lawful gun owners with punishing fines, loss of rights, and jail time with those same criminals they are mentioning.

  7. Not to be technical, but Shannon is actually from Missouri (I believe she is an Ozarks area native) so her “hometown” is more like St. Louis . . . . which is actually worse . . . . in terms of murders

  8. Basically, you have criminals shooting/killing criminals….THAT’S where Obama got his statement in SOTUS that “arrests and incarcerations are down”. IF that is the case I have no problem with it, except sweeping that fact under the carpet and lumping us honest, peaceful gun owners in with the 15-24 year old druggie/thugs murdering each other is pretty maddening. If the truth was spoken, more honest, peaceful citizens would want to own guns, and the Progressives can’t have that.

  9. I couldn’t listen all the way thru due to problems with USAtoday player, but I am guessing the union guy was doing his job trying to explain the street cops perspective- which I appreciate.

    While the management has to kowtow to the politicians who hire them, and mouth whatever platitudes the pols require- ie make more gun laws that only work on the law abiding,

    what the union guy is trying to say, in the most politically correct way, but in statistics that are damning- that the problem is not the gun (or knife, or hammer, or fist) that kills, or rapes, or attacks the cop,
    but the person.

    And the union guy is suggesting longer terms to simply put the bad person away, off the street.

    One of the explanations for dropping violent crime rates is the tougher laws put in place in the 80s- 3 strikes law in CA, for example. Now that prisons filled up, to over capacity, CA is forced to let people loose earlier. And crime rates appear to be reversing, and already you can see the left-progtards are desperate to cover that up- FBI stats fudged, by failing to include ‘some’ major cities that didnt fill in the blanks properly- (CHICAGO) and others that reported late (Los Angeles) or are being investigated for falsifying the stats by downgrading (Los Angeles) the offenses to misdemeanors.

    Interesting times for the gun-grabbers. No wonder Obama and Holder and their allies in the NPR.orgs, and Bloomberg sock puppets, and Brady/CSVGR/Giffords type “citizen” activist groups are so desperate to pass something, anything, while the rest of America is saying, more and more, dont pass any more laws to limit citizen rights to self-defense.

    Its obvious to the street cops, to the citizens, and to the criminals what works. Just not to the Elites Who Know Whats Best For The Little People, and their media enablers, pandering to the shrinking segment of NPR listeners and NYT readers…

  10. Yep. The whole meme of liberal/progressives/statists is that it is just average every day folk that got a gun and out of a momentary burst of anger; pulled out that gun and shot dead their friend/neighbor/spouse etc.

    Nope. It is primarily those that have a criminal history that murder others; primarily those like themselves.

    Law abiding citizens just catch the few outliers of the world of the criminal.

    For the criminal, their existence is a lawless Mad Max landscape of rape, pillage and plunder with murder or being murdered at any moment as the rest of go on about our relatively peaceful world separated many times by just a street sign or rail road track.

    This is actual proof that an alternate universe can exist side by side in the same space with out the need of an interdimensional gate way to access them. (I’m being fu

  11. Like any other city, all or nearly all were clustered around certain parts of the city; parts where the riff-raff is aplenty.

  12. Let’s see …

    Violent ex-convicts commit on the order of 90% of all violent crimes. Thus gun grabbers want government to focus their actions against people with no criminal record as their best approach to reduce violent crime.

    Yeah, that makes no sense to me either.

  13. Awww!!, the smell of job security. Keep the crime rate high. Make excuses, point fingers, publish statistics.

    Justifies more officers, more equipment, bigger budget, pay raises for everyone in blue!!

    Call for more gun control, limit the size of soft drinks, curfews, dress code, behavior control. Violating political correctness will become a felony. Ban books (oops! No need, no one can read anymore)

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