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Violence Policy Center press release below:

Washington, DC — Private citizens legally allowed to carry concealed handguns have committed at least 26 mass shootings over the past six years — including the recent mass murder at the Washington Navy Yard that left 12 dead and a July shooting in Hialeah, Florida that ended the lives of six innocent victims. These and other criminal killings can be found in the Violence Policy Center’s (VPC) latest update to Concealed Carry Killers, an online resource that offers examples of non-self defense killings by private citizens legally allowed to carry concealed handguns in public. Overall, concealed carry killers were involved in at least 386 fatal incidents since May 2007, leading to at least 540 deaths including the killing of 14 law enforcement officers . . .

Concealed Carry Killers is the most comprehensive report available on non-self defense killings by legal carriers of concealed firearms. Because there is no comprehensive record keeping of these incidents and many states in fact bar the release of such information, the examples on the Concealed Carry Killers website are taken primarily from news reports and most likely represent a fraction of actual events.

“Mass shootings by concealed handgun permit holders are now a common occurrence. It’s no surprise that the NRA and the gun industry, who benefit financially from lax concealed carry laws, ignore this growing body count. But for the sake of the victims and survivors of these shootings, the human cost of these lethal laws must be exposed,” states VPC Legislative Director Kristen Rand.

Concealed Carry Killers documents 386 incidents in 32 states and the District of Columbia since May 2007, resulting in 540 deaths involving private citizens legally allowed to carry concealed handguns. Fourteen of the victims were law enforcement officers. Twenty-six of the incidents were mass shootings, resulting in the deaths of 125 victims.

Below is a graph that breaks down the types of incidents documented in the report (click here to view the graph online):

In the vast majority of the incidents documented (315, or 82 percent), the concealed carry killer either committed suicide (132), has already been convicted (135), perpetrated a murder-suicide (37), or was killed in the incident (11).

Of the 58 cases still pending, the vast majority (48) of concealed carry killers have been charged with criminal homicide. Four were deemed incompetent to stand trial, and six incidents are still under investigation. An additional 13 incidents were fatal unintentional shootings involving a gun of the concealed handgun permit holder.

The 386 incidents do not include any that were eventually ruled as self-defense. Only 12 of the hundreds of examples tallied in Concealed Carry Killers were eventually deemed lawful self-defense. Such cases are then removed from the site’s ongoing totals.

A detailed summary of each of the 386 incidents is available at Clicking on each category leads to a state-by-state breakout for the incidents. To review all deaths involving concealed carry killers, click on “Total People Killed by Concealed Carry Killers.”

For examples of non-fatal concealed carry incidents, visit the VPC’s Concealed Carry Killers page on Facebook:!/pages/Violence-Policy-Center-Concealed-Carry-Killers/258069527568

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    • As I recall (could be mistaken), he had a valid permit from out-of-state, which was not accepted (valid) in Washington, D.C.

      • Putting together what people here are saying; it sounds like it isn’t public knowledge until the trial is over. So; since news articles on the subject are written [and in turn cited by this ‘study’] before the trial is over many are speculation passed off as news. Then again; I have not fact checked what people here are saying…..

    • The Key to this report is that, 1. the report is inaccurate because it comes from news reports. The idea that this information is kept secret is a total, “LIE”. The fact that a license holders information is private becomes null and void as soon as they are found guilty of the crime. Their information immediately become public when they are found to be responsible for the crime. Therefore, for the VPC to state that proof of their license is kept confidential even after the crime has been committed should be considered liable. Only a handful of License Carry persons have been found guilty of crimes throughout the U.S.. Because of this, the VPC must make up “Facts” as they go along.

    • Notice how they define out police officers, even though police also legally carry concealed firearms off duty?

      Their numbers would show multiple times the number of people unjustly killed by police than by CCW holders.

      Of course, there is the usual huge distrortion due to their including of suicides.

  1. The title “Violence Policy Center” implies an impartial analysis of all types of violence. If that were true, they should be presenting information without giving advice such as “Abused women: don’t buy a gun.” I need no further proof that they are not impartial, and have an anti gun agenda and will provide data that proves their preconceived conclusions. Shame of it all is that I believe violence to be the real problem in society, and showing mortality and morbidity by all types of violence would be far more helpful.

  2. Hmmm if they were already convicted that would have nullified their permit. Also how are they counting these?? If a concealed carrier was one of the dead did it count?

    • I think they mean that he has already been convicted for the murder that they are counting, not for some other prior murder. There are also several murders in their tally, where the suspect has not yet gone to trial or the trial is in progress (not convicted yet).

  3. Hmm convicted. I’d look at what they mean by that… Convicted just means you were found or declared guilty of committing A crime, no mention of what kind of crime. If i’m not mistaken, anyone who’s paid a traffic ticket has been convicted. Let’s tear this one apart TTAG. In before we find out they just looked at a bunch of mass shooters and checked if they would have qualified for a CCW then declared them “Concealed Carry Killers”.

  4. Thats about as biased and one sided a report as you can have. Of course they would leave out the the rest of the info. According to FBI.GOV, in that same time frame there were over 50,000 firearm related homicides. And almost another 25,000 non firearm related. With 540 coming from concealed carry permit holders, thats less than 1%. Sure thats really the problem. Most come from illegal handguns. The criminal will always find away, and some laws or rules will not stop them. In every other crime like we blame the person, except when a gun is involved. Then its the evil power of the gun. A gun that of course does nothing unless a person makes a series of decisions.

    • Agreed. I also enjoy their assertion that:

      “Mass shootings by concealed handgun permit holders are now a common occurrence.”

      Citation please? Define your use of the word “common,” as CHL/CCW holder mass shootings don’t even come close to the dictionary definition.

      Statists with projection issues pushing to have my rights taken away. Another day ending in y.

  5. Well, last year there were something like 30,000 gun deaths, correct? And about half, 15,000, were not suicide.

    Gun violence is on the decline, but to pad for inaccuracy we’ll say that those numbers bear out back to 2007.

    That means in the six and a half years of the study, there were 97,500 gun killings in the US, 540 of which were committed by CCW.


    • This was what I was thinking when I looked at the above numbers. I try not to follow a lot of the anti links 1) it usually just makes me angry to read lies. 2) I don’t like to show extra traffic on their web pages.

    • Without seeing the details of each of the supposed crimes they are counting, and the judicial process involved in the convictions, I think we should remember George Zimmerman and the show trial put on to try to convict him. I doubt that this is the only prosecutor in America who has a hard-on for CCW holders and is willing to waste a lot of government resources finding a way to convict then of something.

      How many of those “convicted” CCW holders would the POTG consider as guilty of murder or manslaughter?

    • Yes, How very convenient than NOWHERE in this report is it mentioned that only .005% of murders in the USA in those 8 years were committed by legal CCW permit holders. The phrase “mass killing”, however, is mentioned in almost every paragraph. A propaganda piece worthy of Stalin. How very Liberal Progressive of them.

    • Every year there are approx. 500,000 aborted babies. Maybe those (VPC et al) that chastise the gun for killing humans should instead put their efforts into fixing a 10x greater cause of death. Those that haven’t screwed up their gene pool yet need to be defended.

      • +500,000! It is sickening and disgusting that so many people are being murdered because their Mother decides it is “inconvenient” for her to bear them to term. If the gun prohibitionists (VPC, Brady Bunch, “Mom’s Demand Action” et al) had one atom of real moral sense, they would demand this slaughter of innocents be stopped! But they don’t and thereby reveal the true face of their ethical bankruptcy.

        • Agreed. Of course whenever that argument comes up they go right to the rape, incest, and mothers health defense. That only accounts for 1% of those abortions. The want to save whales, trees, and even convicted killers. But its open season on children because people can’t deal with the fact that sex may lead to pregnancy. Since the 70’s its been a war on unborn children totaling 50,000,000+ and rising. That blows gun deaths in the US since that time out of the water and is roughly 50x more than all American deaths due to war since the Revolutionary War.

  6. “…taken primarily from news reports…”

    So obviously all these homicides were committed with automatic assault rifles with high capacity clips then.

  7. It is like there is a race on to create the slickest, most seemingly legit database of anti-gun factoids for the everyday, low information gliberal to draw upon. You can tell these folks are trying real hard to sex up these numbers, but the fact is these numbers amount to diddly squat.

    What all of these clowns seem to want is a precrime division ala “Minority Report” and barring that, ban anything that could be used to efficiently murder anybody. It isn’t going to happen, people have rights until they are convicted of a crime. It is a no brainer that some people given permits to carry weapons will abuse the power it gives them, the same as when someone gets behind the wheel of a car they might drive too fast and cause an accident.

    Of course, many of the people behind gun control initiatives would also love to do away with personal automobile ownership as well. These people are fundamentally un-American and want us to become slaves to the state they blindly worship. They puff up these stats but really the numbers presented are not shocking or disturbing in any way.

    They will not stop until they have every child in this country humming along with their tune, that is the real battle and my only real concern. Children can be easily manipulated by adults in a position of authority and these gliberals strive for positions of authority over children. My only comforts are the prevalence of firearms, the objective beauty of their forms and the joy of owning them. But is it enough?

  8. The Violence Policy Center is really one person, Josh Sugarmann. He is a freedom crushing propagandist. His publications are a joke and wouldn’t stand up to any form of academic peer review. This guy loves confusing people when it comes to guns.

    “Assault weapons—just like armor-piercing bullets, machine guns, and plastic firearms—are a new topic. The weapons’ menacing looks, coupled with the public’s confusion over fully automatic machine guns versus semi-automatic assault weapons—anything that looks like a machine gun is assumed to be a machine gun—can only increase the chance of public support for restrictions on these weapons. In addition, few people can envision a practical use for these weapons.” Josh Sugarmann “Assault Weapons in American”

  9. It’s a simple matter of proportion. 386 incidents by CCW holders over a multi-year period? That sounds pretty darn low to me, considering how many MILLIONS of us there are. Look at the Texas CHL holder data that was posted here a few days ago – the Texas concealed carry population’s murder rate was 8-1/2 times less than the general population – almost an order of magnitude lower! Certainly the Violence Policy Center’s statisticians are able to express their results in murders per 100,000 permit holders, and compare them to the general public. Not willing, but able.

    • “…the Texas concealed carry population’s murder rate was 8-1/2 times less than the general population…”

      Pffffff… details…

      Never let the facts get in the way of a good story.

  10. The VPC is the most extreme, rabidly anti-gun organization of the bunch. They never let “facts” get in the way of their agenda. They’re the ones who started the whole rabble about .50 caliber rifles some years back, and didn’t let the fact that not a single crime had ever been committed with one get in their way. Maybe someday the Joyce Foundation will go bankrupt and these clowns will lose their sugar daddy and go away.

  11. I have to ask, with the ambiguous language ” examples of non-self defense killings by private citizens legally allowed to carry concealed handguns in public”-Does that mean that all murders committed in Constitutional carry states would potentially fall under this???

        • I’m in the same pot of gumbo. I’m just tryin to find an old 40mm BOFORS for the drones and black helichoppers in whisper mode… or maybe a SAM battery

        • Jay, I’m in it too. I’m looking for the parts to build an EMP cannon. I wonder if a Tesla Coil needs to be registered.

  12. I thought I read somewhere that a mass shooting was 4 or more victims in a single incident.

    There were a fair number of incidents in the report with 3 victims or 4 dead including the shooter.

    I think in absolute terms this is a high number. When looked at in context with the overall firearm murder rate, it’s a pretty low percentage.

    I’ve thought about this before. To me the only situation where the fact that the shooter had a carry permit is relevant is where the shooting was not premeditated and would not have happened absent the ability to lawfully carry in the location where the murders happened. Having a carry permit is irrelevant for example in the situation of the folks who determined ahead if time that they were going to kill a large number of people, practiced carrying out the act and went to the scene of the murder withe the express intent to kill mass numbers of people. The CCW is irrelevant to those situations because once a person has made up their mind to commit mass murder, the fact that carrying the gun to the scene was also illegal was not going to make a difference one way or the other.

    It also only measures the cost of ccw without recognizing the benefits.

    This unfortunately will likely change minds among those who don’t do critical thinking. It didn’t move the needle for me.

    • There is no gov’t defined definition for ‘mass shooting’ AFAIK. The FBI doesn’t list such incidents separately. After the CT incident, the Rolling Stone article decided to use 4 shooting deaths (IIRC) as their minimum for a mass shooting. Australia uses 5 shooting deaths as a minimum to claim that they have not had a mass shooting incident since they passed their confiscation laws.

      It’s all pretty arbitrary, which of course gets manipulated to show what you want.

      • “Mass” could be more than one. That would explain some of the “statistics” we’ve been seeing lately. New terms emerge from the rectum with amazing frequency lately.

  13. Actually we should be thanking the Violence Policy Center for this data. With it we can show that CCL holders (we know the approximate numbers of license holders per state) are more law abiding compared to the general public, by a large margin in fact! What gun-control advocate would disagree with data from one of their biggest allies?

  14. This just means they passed an slightly more comprehensive than normal background check.

    A little card in their wallet is not going to prevent people from rampaging on others like the Navy Yard Shooter.

    This data would only be worthy is the killers committed murder in a seemingly random incident. Like they didn’t set out to hurt anyone, but something happened, and ended up with someone dead. Then that would be a notable statistic to look at. Otherwise, correlation does not equate to causation.

  15. Soooo:

    1. Of the list they have (which if since 2007 is 6 years)… like 1/4 of them are suicides. So we can rule that out for starters.

    2. The list is probably mostly BS and including fallacies, especially since it was supposedly gleaned by reading news media. We know how accurate the news media is (ie AP reporting the tsa shooter was an off duty tsa agent yesterday, mslsd editing 911 tapes, etc.

    3. But, let’s be generous and assume that once we subtract out suicides the data is correct….that’s somewhere between 50 and 70 deaths a year. In reality the number of actual crimes is going to be much lower than that, even. Because a lot of those cases where people are charged, it’s probably over-zealous cops charging people. Or, just because they are under investigation does NOT mean the police are going to charge them, either. Or just because they are charged (and charged is a big number on the graph) does NOT mean they are guilty, but people seem to forget that and jump to conclusions….

    4. Once you factor all that into account, the real number is, I guarantee, going to be much less than 50 a year, probably lower than 25, but I’m not going to spend the time to try to dig through their media reports. Even if we take their number of approx 50-70 a year and assume allllll the non-suicides were homicide, wow that number is insanely low. Reality is probably going to be much much lower than that. But let’s say 50.

    5. From wikipedia from 2010, the number of murders in the US was about 15,000 (it’s 14,700-something).

    Wow. Concealed carry permit holders are likely the the most law abiding group, as far as murder goes, in the country. That number is soooo low (and again the real number is probably even lower than 50, probably like 10-20 or so)…I’d bet money that statistically they are more law abiding than police officers are. I’m honestly shocked the numbers are that low.

    Also one more point: Those suicide numbers are INSANELY LOW. I almost don’t believe them. I’d really doubt they are that low. If that number is true.. hell I’ll go a step further. If the real number is even several times that number, psychs should be doing studies on concealed carry permit holders to figure out what causes their suicide rate to be so low, and figure out how to come up with behavioral therapies based on it.

    • psychs should be doing studies on concealed carry permit holders to figure out what causes their suicide rate to be so low,

      That’s easy.

      We don’t want our deaths to be used for anti-gun propaganda. 😉

    • Maybe CCW holders simply tend to be sane, well-adjusted people?

      How about research on why loonies don’t get CCW…?

    • You have the right idea. The VPC’s numbers are bogus. Here is a thorough breakdown of the killers.
      Violence Policy Center’s Concealed Carry Killers: Less than it Appears

      “There are some legitimate questions as to whether some states could do a better job of
      suspending, revoking, or not issuing permits to persons who are clearly not qualified under existing law. There are some serious problems with our system for dealing with mentally ill persons, and unfortunately, concealed handgun licensing is only part of the problem. There is some room for improvement. What is quite clear is that VPC‘s data, carefully analyzed, does not make a case that shall-issue laws make Americans less safe.”

  16. My my my how he pads his stats! He includes suicides as “concealed carry killers”. Really? Why? Because half of the reported “killings” are suicides (132 vs 135 convicted killers). So let’s back those out right off, and then add in the 37 murder/suicides, for a grand total of 172 killers over the course of the last six and a half years. Um hmm. Dangerous crew that–26 killers per year (on average), and that includes people who did not use a concealed weapon to commit their crime (Navy Yard shooter) or who did not have a CCW because their jurisdiction did not require one (Loughner). There are more accidental shootings per year than there are intentional shootings by concealed weapons holders.

    Apples to apples. There are 15000 plus suicides with firearms every year–and only 20 or so of them are CCW holders. This helps Josh exactly how? IT DOESN’T.
    Oranges to oranges. There are approximately 12000 unlawful killings every year, and of those, approximately 26 are by concealed weapons holders. That is 0.2 percent of the total (on average).

  17. Maybe they included law enforcement and former law enforcement. Wouldn’t that give them the inflated numbers they where looking for while simoltainously allowing then to hide behind law enforcements civilian status, even though cops are theoretically held to a higher standard of self edges and tend to intentionally put themselves in situations where they might make a “bad shot” in the course of their regular duties?

  18. I started reading the article but stopped. It’s not worth wasting my brain cells reading a bunch of anti propaganda Get real VPC.

  19. At this point the gun prohibitionists will. and do. try anything, any angle, any lie..any distortion, to advance their disarmament agenda, which is the only way the progressive, statists can ultimately impose their goal of absolute control of the American People. This tactic smells of desperation, but don’t let that lull anyone into false confidence.

  20. That’s it. I’m shredding my CCW and selling my firearms before their evil emanations turn me into a mass murdering zombie.

    Guess I’ll have to get rid of any claw hammers as well…

  21. It should only be 16 “mass shootings.” If mass shootings and mass murders are considered to have similar requirements to be considered “mass” and mass murder is 4 or more people murdered by the shooter then 10 of the 26 reported don’t count since those 10 incidents only have 3 dead victims excluding the shooter.
    Out of those 10, 5 committed suicide while the other 5 were alive after the incident.

    This is based on their source.

    I hadn’t checked to see if any of the states reported are may issue. It appears most if not all states reported are shall issue.

    • Out of the numbers listed, 2 of the “mass shootings” that had only 3 people die others were wounded by the shooter. In 1 there were 3 wounded and the other has 2 wounded. There was 1 actual mass shooting reported with 1 wounded; there where 4 people killed.

      Obviously DC is “may” issue but that was the Navy Yard and supposedly it came from Washington state and wouldn’t have been recognized by DC. May issue states reported: New York x1, Connecticut x1,

    • Yetti – I tried to match this mass shooting data up against the Mother Jones data and found out pretty quickly that the VPC is using the broader definition of “mass shooting” (i.e. fewer victims). People can argue about 3 versus 4 but we can be certain that the VPC wanted to cast as wide a net as possible which is why they included that Arizona shooting as a “concealed carry killer” event even though you do not need a permit to carry in Arizona.

      I live in Connecticut and we have about 95-110 firearm deaths each year with over 85% of them taking place in our three largest cities (New Haven, Bridgeport and Hartford). Close to 90% of the victims and shooters are young black males between age 15 and 25. And in almost every situation, an illegal handgun was involved. Rough math suggests that in 6.5 years, close to 600 such young men would have lost their lives during this “study’s” period. Where is the VPC’s “study” on this trend? Is the VPC racist in their ignoring the deaths of even more young black men?

  22. A few comments on this piece of “research” from someone with an engineering degree and who works with numbers all day, every day:

    1) Not that they do no offer a time series on this concept of “concealed carry killers” – why? Would the time series show decreasing incidents that match the trend in declining levels of gun violence generally?

    2) Why such a strange sampling period, March 2007 to October 2008? Other than this being a 6.5 year period, why not start in January 2007 or even October 2006 for a full seven years? Without reviewing a timeline of the incidents, I can only guess that this particular period gave them something they wanted.

    3) Note that they mix “incidents” and “victims” throughout their discussion, which is somewhat strange, especially when they focus on “incidents” in their charts rather than victims. If you review the official statistics, they are all based on the actual number of deaths, not the incidents in the case of multiple dead per incident. Again, why? Also, I skimmed through the “mass shooting” details and they include at least on event in Arizona which is a constitutional carry state and not formal permitting process is involved. In that case, they include that individual and the six deaths attributable to him. One could argue that that is a very broad application of “concealed carry permit” if there is not background check requirement involved in owning a handgun. Also, that one incident accounted for 6 of the 125 deaths attributable to 26 mass shootings. I do not have time to scan all the other incidents but I would be there are a few more such cases of “permit-less” carry being included in this work.

    4) Note that there is no context provided for the number of deaths relative to the total number of deaths by firearm. Using the data provided at (an effort not supportive of gun rights), during the period in question, there were about 75,500 non-suicide, non-accident gun deaths for the 6.5 year period. Based on this VPC study, there were 358 non-suicide, non-accident homicides attributable to “concealed carry killers” or 0.48% of the total for the period. Yes, “concealed carry killers” accounted for LESS THAN ONE HALF OF ONE PERCENT the homicides during this period.

    5) Looking at the suicide statistic, I note that the 169 suicides (includes the suicide in murder/suicides) represent 31% of the total number of deaths in this study. This is roughly half of the national rate of suicide gun deaths nationally. What does that mean? Why is this not observed by the “researchers”? Are “concealed carry” people less depressed and less likely to commit suicide than non-handgun firearm owners?

    6) Based on 358 non-suicide, non-accident deaths over 6.5 years, this average out to roughly 55 “concealed carry” homicides per year. According to Wikipedia’s citation on concealed carry, “ …the GAO reports that there were about 8 million active permits in the United States as of December 31, 2011”. If correct, that means that in any given year during this period and using these numbers, the rate at which pistol permit holders are involved in a non-suicide, non-accident firearm death is infinitesimal at 55/8,000,000 or 0.00007%. This result alone should make this “study” useless as an argument against the law-abiding nature of conceal carry folk.

    By any neutral assessment, this “study” is a ideologically-driven piece of crap that would not stand up to the mildest of analytical scrutiny. Sure, that will not stop the usual suspects of exploiting the total number but I hope the above provides some context should you ever have to rebut this ridiculous study.

  23. What the Hell is the VPC? Where did they come from? Whose basement do they operate out of? Do they have any valid reason for existing other than to hoover up liberal PAC money?

  24. So…. we should be concerned about people who commited 0.7% of all murders since 2007? I repeat ZERO POINT SEVEN PERCENT OF ALL MURDERS. Seems to me all this report does is show how law abiding conceal carriers are. Thanks VPC for siding with us pro-gunners for once.

  25. I think the problem with these kinds of studies is how biased they are.

    I believe the numbers about CCW holders committing mass shootings. I have researched this before, and there is a small percentage of CCW holders who have committed murder, but at a lower rate the general population of the state which issued the CCW.

    If the numbers pointed how the millions of CCW permit holders, or the mass shootings involving illegally acquired guns (fyi, Adam Lanza stole his mother’s weapons, who sadly both failed to deal with her son’s mental illness and to secure her guns so that he could not access them), it would be more objective.

  26. People are swallowing the VPC lie that these killers had concealed weapon permits.

    Some did.

    Many did not, having instead occupational permits (armed security guard licenses), permits to purchase (which do not authorize a person to carry a weapon) or were retired law enforcement officers who carried under authority of their retired LEO status.

    And some had no license of any sort at all.

    Step 1 when dealing with the VPC is question every single claim they make. They are notorious flagrant unprincipled liars.

  27. The cited “Study”, right from the title onward is an example of subterfuge. The authors of the study in question do everything they can to mislead people into thinking the deaths were caused by people with Concealed Carry Permits. That is NOT the case. These crimes (and only several hundred in a six year period of time), were committed by people who could have qualified for a Concealed Carry Permit based on the fact that they hadn’t committed a felony BEFORE committing the crime in question. By definition, every criminal at one point commits his or her first crime, and as such, would at one point in his or her life, qualify for a CCW permit (except in the many cases where the person has committed a felony before reaching the age of 21 required by most States to obtain a CCW permit).

    Here are TWO FACTS you won’t find these authors publishing:

    Only 0.02% of Licensed Concealed Carry Permit holders are ever convicted of a crime.

    Licensed Concealed Carry Permit holders are convicted of crime less often per capita then sworn police officers.

  28. Anti-gun laws and gun free zones set up for mass murderers.

    Politicians, by enacting those laws, KILL.

    Anti-gun voters, by voting them in, KILL.

    Anti-gun people are the killers; rapist, burgulars, and muggers target them and you will live!


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