Tracking gun violence in Philadelphia: December 9, 2020

Latest Philadelphia data

Police reported 48 people shot in Philadelphia during the week ending Sunday, down sharply from the previous week but still well ahead of the average of 27 people shot in the city each week during the previous five years. [Philadelphia Police]

• Police reported 464 homicides in Philadelphia through Monday night, up 39 percent from the same period last year and more than double the pace recorded in 2013. []

New research

• A new study from Penn and Columbia researchers shows that an annual average of 120,232 nonfatal firearm injuries were recorded in the US from 2009-2017, twice the number of all gun deaths. A press release and Twitter thread from a local ER doc provide helpful breakdowns. [JAMA/Penn Medicine/@kit_delgadoMD]

• Another new study from the same universities takes a look into new perspectives on patient transports conducted by Philadelphia Police, including “scoop-and-runs” of gunshot patients. [Trauma Surgery & Acute Care Open]

• New research from Everytown reports that Black people have the highest rate of nonfatal gun injuries, over 10 times higher than white people, and that the Latinx rate of is double that of white people. []

• Disproportionate news coverage contributes to distorted perceptions of risk and reinforces inaccurate stereotypes related to mass shootings, according to research from Northeastern University. [SAGE Journals]

• A recent study from the Center for Court Innovation found that young people who carry guns often feel like they have to protect themselves. [NYTimes]

Gun sales

• Americans bought an estimated 1.73 million guns in November 2020, including 99,000 in Pennsylvania, according to an analysis of FBI data. A gun company survey shows that the average ‘law abiding’ gun owner possesses eight firearms. [The Trace/MarketWatch]


• To keep young people safe, public health researchers and firearm safety experts recommend three practical tips for new gun owners. [The Philadelphia Inquirer]


• As the anniversary of the Sandy Hook massacre approaches, a proposed ban on carrying guns in Newtown, CT, has been blocked by town legislators who said they cannot preempt state law. []

• Families of those killed and wounded in a rural California shooting rampage three years ago are suing manufacturers and sellers of “ghost gun” kits that provide easy-to-assemble firearm parts that make it difficult to track or regulate owners. [The Associated Press]

National gun violence emergency

• Homicides have doubled in Milwaukee this year. Indianapolis broke its 2018 record of gun deaths with weeks to spare. In Minneapolis, 79 homicides is the highest count since the mid-90s. [CBS58/WTHR/Star Tribune]

• A report from the National Commission on COVID19 and Criminal Justice reported that homicide rates in 21 US cities increased by 42% during the summer and 34% in the fall, when compared with the summer and fall of 2019. [Council on Criminal Justice]

Data point from The Trace

• At least 4,743 — the number of children 17 and under who have been shot this year, the highest level since Gun Violence Archive started tracking in 2014. The previous high of 3,989 was set in 2017. [The Trace/Gun Violence Archive]

Solution of the week

• When gun violence survivors dial 211 in St. Louis, they can discuss their experiences and find out about services including mental health counseling, employment, home repair or securing housing. [The St. Louis American]

In the news

• Jim MacMillan of the Center for Gun Violence Reporting discusses the Credible Messenger Reporting Project. [Generocity]

• Kensington community panel discusses journalists in their neighborhoods. [WHYY]

Giving everyday

• #GivingTuesday was last week but you can support the Center for Gun Violence Reporting any day by making a contribution to The Initiative for Better Gun Violence Reporting. []

Finding help in Philadelphia

• The Philly Gun Violence Resource List was compiled by WHYY’s Billy Penn and has been released for public use by other media organizations or anyone else. [Google Docs]

• Safe gun storage prevents unintentional shootings and people in Philadelphia are invited to get a free gun lock. [Temple Safety Net]

Report for us!

• We are now seeking applicants to join the Credible Messenger Reporting Project and tell the story of gun violence and prevention in Philadelphia from the community perspective.

Community reporters will be paired with professional journalists to learn from each other, craft stories and get the news out where it can make a difference.

We hope to see some of the resulting reports shared by local news organizations, while other might be more effective on social media platforms and we hope to find professional journalists learning more about engaging new audiences. The possibilities are endless.

The Center will provide equal funding to both partners and cover related expenses, including stipends for story subjects from the community in some cases.

Visit our home page for more info and link to apply: