FBI report shows which regions produce more fatal shootings

Firearms accounted for the most murders last year, and some regions are more dangerous than others.

Amid what NPR calls an “unprecedented spike in murders,” new data shows murder victims were much more likely to shot in the South and Midwest than they were in the Northeast, and especially out West last year.

That’s one of the revelations in the FBI Uniform Crime Report for 2020, released Monday, and it is already causing a stir. As reported earlier, murder spiked in the United States a startling 29.4 percent and overall violent crime has jumped 5.6 percent.

Firearms account for 76.7 percent of all the murders, while knives or other cutting instruments were used in 9.8 percent of the slayings, according to the new FBI data.

But on a regional breakdown, the data shows you are much more likely to be murdered by someone with a gun in the South (80.4%) than in the Midwest (79.4%), Northeast (70.3%) or in the West (69.4%). But no worry, because killers in all four regions have other means of your disposal. In the Northeast, knives or other cutting instruments are used in 15.9 percent of all the murders. Out West, knife-wielding killers accounted for 13.4 percent of murders in 2020.

In the South, only 7.7 percent of murders were committed with knives, and in the Midwest, according to the new FBI data, 7.6 percent of last year’s murder victims were stabbed/slashed to death.

In all four regions, fewer than five percent of murder victims were beaten to death, but out West, 12.3 percent of murder victims were killed with “unknown or other dangerous weapons.” The report does not specify what those weapons might be.

Ten percent of Midwest murder victims were also killed with “unknown” weapons and 8.9 percent of the victims in the Northeast were murdered with those unidentified weapons.

Nationally, 113 people were murdered with “narcotics” and 106 were burned to death, the FBI report said. Sixteen people were poisoned, 58 were strangled and 71 were asphyxiated. Four people were killed in explosions and two were actually thrown or pushed out of windows.

Another tidbit from the data is the number of gangland killings (486) and juvenile gang killings (415).

According to the FBI, “Of the 18,619 federal, state, county, city, university and college, and tribal agencies eligible to participate in the UCR Program, 15,897 agencies submitted data in 2020.”

Interestingly, when the New York Times reported on the FBI crime report, reaction from readers was sharp.

One Wyoming reader observed blamed the rise on “defund the police tactics by the left.”

Another reader, from the “East Coast,” smacked just about everybody,including “Democratic mayors, prosecutors, legislators, and judges.”

There were 763 comments before the newspaper closed the comments section.


FBI: Murder up 29.4% in 2020, violent crime jumps 5.6%


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