September 7, 2015

SHOCKER: Study Finds That Chicago Criminals Get Guns From Friends, Family; Not acquired from gun shows or online sales.

A survey conducted by researchers from Duke University and the University of Chicago found that Chicago criminals obtained their firearms almost exclusively from friends and family.

The survey, funded by the Joyce Foundation and set to be published in the October edition of Preventive Medicine, consisted of interviews with 99 inmates at Chicago’s Cook County Jail who had illegally possessed a gun within six months of their incarceration. It found that most criminals only acquired guns from people they knew and trusted.

“It is rare for offenders to buy from licensed dealers, and also rare for them to steal their guns,” the study says. “Rather, the predominant sources of guns to offenders are family, acquaintances, fellow gang members—which is to say, members of their social network.”

The study found that due to fears of encountering undercover police officers attempting sting operations, a large majority of the criminals surveyed would only make illegal gun purchases from people they knew. “In discussing the underground gun market in their neighborhoods, most respondents emphasized the importance of connections—prior relationships that could create sufficient trust to reassure the seller that the transaction would not create an unacceptable legal risk,” the survey says. “A majority of the primary guns (40 of the 48 for which we have detailed information on the source) were obtained from family, fellow gang members, or other social connections; the fraction is still higher for secondary guns.”

“Only 2 of the 70 primary guns (3%) and no secondary guns were reported as purchased directly from a gun store.”

It’s as if all the “anti crime” gun-control proposals we hear were mostly meant to make it harder for ordinary, law-abiding people to buy guns.

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