Tracking gun violence in Philadelphia: February 3, 2021

Philadelphia Shooting Victims: Past 48 months

Latest Philadelphia data

• Last month 200 people were shot in Philadelphia. Last year, 113 shooting victims were recorded during January. From 2005 through 2019, the city’s average shooting victim total during the month of January was 88. [Philadelphia Police]

• Police reported 50 total homicides in Philadelphia last month, 32 percent ahead of last year’s pace and more victims than any other January found in open data going back to 2007. The last time more homicide victims were recorded in January was 1964, but that included 31 wood alcohol poisoning cases. []

In response

• Police say social media interactions have been leading to violent confrontations, including shootings and homicides. In Southwest Philadelphia, police are holding a virtual info session to address domestic violence cases they say have been “through the roof.” [WHYY/@PPD19Dist]

• Violence prevention activist Jamal Johnson is well into the third week of his hunger strike and now looks “visibly gaunt.” [@JAMAL_SKU/Billy Penn]

• The Philadelphia Obituary Project is recognizing National Gun Violence Survivors Week and is inviting anyone who has lost a loved one to write an obit. []

Penn docs speak out

• Last year 632 gunshot victims were cared for at University of Pennsylvania health facilities but selective reporting limits awareness of the public health impact of gun violence. [@MarkSeamonMD/@ResusOne]

Lessons from New Jersey

• Learn how gun laws work in New Jersey work, including licenses, permits, open carry and concealed carry. Then, look at how these restrictive laws correlate with death rates. [The Philadelphia Inquirer/CDC]

Regional updates

• Gun violence claimed 29 lives in Wilmington, Del. last year. Three people were shot to death in Camden, NJ, last month. [WITN 22/Courier Post]

News that used to stun us

• Tuesday’s gun violence headlines from across the nation were exceptionally brutal: Five children were killed in an Oklahoma mass shooting, five FBI agents were shot — two fatally — in Florida and three people are dead following a possible snow shoveling dispute in northeast Pennsylvania. [Tulsa World/Miami Herald/The Times Leader]

• Gun violence data expert John Roman says “It is likely that violence in the US, particularly in cities, has been rest at a new, higher equilibrium.” [Substack]

Local updates from Washington

• A DC councilmember is calling for a state of emergency to address gun violence. The mayor has hired the city’s first director of gun violence prevention. [DCist/Washington Post]

So many guns

• Nearly 140,000 guns were sold in Pennsylvania during January. New Jersey gun sales last month were up 235 percent from January last year. A gun dealer near Chicago reports “gun sales 10 times from what it was in the pandemic, which was already 10 times what your normal business was.” [The Trace/Chicago Sun Times]

• The Transportation Security Administration said it detected twice as many firearms per million passengers at airport security checkpoints last year than during 2019. [The Washington Post]

Paying the cost of gun violence

• Illinois recreational marijuana tax funding has been designated for communities suffering high rates of gun violence. A Connecticut state representative introduced legislation to tax ammunition inn order to support local gun violence prevention programs. [FOX 2/Hartford Courant]


• Most gun owners believe gun control advocates want to take their guns away. Allowing guns on Montana campuses won’t increase safety. HBCUs will study how and why young Black men are particularly susceptible to being victims or perpetrators of gun violence. [Psychology Today/Missoula Current/HBCU Buzz]

Solution of the week

• Missouri recorded its highest levels of gun violence in history in 2020. Experts say the state must look to public health. [The Kansas City Star]

Reporting on gun violence

• We recently added the Rockefeller Institute of Government Gun Violence Dashboard to our Reporting Resources page for journalists covering gun violence. If anybody wants to apply for the Knight-Wallace reporting fellowship and address gun violence solutions, we’d love to partner. [PCGVR/@UMKnightWallace]

Journalists wanted

• At present we have more community members signed up for the Credible Messenger Reporting Project than we can match with professional journalism partners. Stipends are available. [PCGVR]