Mass shooting statistics – What I learned

US Mass Shootings, 1982-2019: Data From Mother Jones’ Investigation

I believe that knowledge is power, and I like to know the facts about important topics. I hope you find some of this useful.

Mother Jones keeps a database of US Mass Shootings for the period 1982-2019. Without seriously questioning their selection of data or its accuracy, I downloaded the information and did some analysis. There are 113 instances of mass shootings/attacks in their database for the period listed. This is their description of the database:

In July 2012, in the aftermath of the movie theater massacre in Aurora, Colorado, Mother Jones created a first-of-its-kind open-source database documenting mass shootings in the United States. Our research focused on indiscriminate rampages in public places resulting in four or more victims killed by the attacker. We exclude shootings stemming from more conventionally motivated crimes such as armed robbery or gang violence. Other news outlets and researchers have since published larger tallies that include a wide range of gun crimes in which four or more people have been either wounded or killed. While those larger datasets of multiple-victim shootings are useful for studying the broader problem of gun violence, our investigation provides an in-depth look at a distinct phenomenon—from the firearms used and mental health factors to the growing copycat problem. Tracking mass shootings is complex; we believe ours is the most useful approach.

In January 2013, a mandate for federal investigation of mass shootings authorized by President Barack Obama lowered that baseline to three or more victims killed. Accordingly, we include attacks dating from January 2013 in which three or more victims were killed. (Any analysis of the frequency of mass shootings should account for this.)

I recommend that you look at the database yourself. There is much more information than I am including here. For instance, the location includes the type such as religious, workplace, school, the state of the shooter’s mental health, if known, whether or not the weapon(s) were obtained legally and where they were acquired. The sources for their data are provided.

Here is what I found. Some of this you may already know or suspect:

Rifles – or long guns of any kind – are not the primary weapons used in mass shootings. Note: Some instances involve multiple weapons. Here is the breakdown, by type. The two numbers that follow each are the totals before or during the Assault Weapons Ban, and those after it expired in 2004:

  • Handguns and revolvers: 131, 49/92
  • Rifles: 71, 17/54
  • Shotguns: 28, 12/16
  • Bombs: 14, 1/13
  • Knives: 3, 0/3

All of the mass shooters were not white. Here is the breakdown by race:

  • White: 61
  • Black: 19
  • Latino: 11
  • Asian: 7
  • Native American: 3
  • Other/Unknown: 12

Since the general population consists of between 65% and 75% white people, it is not amazing that 54% of the shooters were white. With a percentage of about 13% in the general population, 17% of the shooters were black. Since the shootings took place over such a long period, the population percentages by race were, of course, not static.

It will probably not surprise you that the overwhelming number of shooters were male. There were a total of 113 shooters, 5 of whom were women.

Number of incidents by year:

1982: 1
1984: 2
1986: 1
1987: 1
1988: 1
1989: 2
1990: 1
1991: 3
1992: 2
1993: 4
1994: 1
1995: 1
1996: 1
1997: 2
1998: 3
1999: 3
2000: 1
2001: 1
2003: 3
2004: 1
2005: 2
2006: 2
2007: 4
2008: 3
2009: 4
2010: 1
2011: 3
2012: 7
2013: 5
2014: 4
2015: 7
2016: 6
2017: 11
2018: 12
2019: 7 (includes the El Paso and Dayton events)

Number of victims killed, by year:

1982: 8
1984: 28
1986: 15
1987: 6
1988: 7
1989: 15
1990: 10
1991: 35
1992: 9
1993: 23
1994: 5
1995: 6
1996: 6
1997: 9
1998: 14
1999: 32
2000: 7
2001: 2
2003: 15
2004: 6
2005: 18
2006: 12
2007: 52
2008: 17
2009: 38
2010: 9
2011: 19
2012: 67
2013: 35
2014: 18
2015: 46
2016: 71
2017: 117
2018: 80
2019: 59

TOTAL: 916

This entry was posted in Crime, Current Events, Government, Politics, Terrorism, The Culture, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Mass shooting statistics – What I learned

  1. Bob says:

    The totals seem to track with the rabidity of the media.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. glendl says:

    Thanks for this link, it will greatly enhance my knowledge base.

    While I consider Mother Jones to be a Leftist publication, a brief look at some I of the shooting seems to indicate everything is in order.
    There are far more mass shootings than I had realized. I have said that mass shootings could have been stopped by enforcing the existing laws. I retract that claim for most of the shootings, but I have listed some shootings which could have been stopped.

    Below, is the Line 30 shooting. The shooter’s name is in the first line. I consider this Jihad and should be attributed to a certain religious group. As I said, I received a 30 suspension from FB for naming that group. I did that because it is the truth and because it was a defense of the accusation that white men were responsible for the killings.
    Fresno downtown shooting Fresno, California 4/18/2017 Kori Ali Muhammad, 39, opened fire along a street in downtown Fresno, killing three people randomly in an alleged hate crime prior to being apprehended by police. Muhammad, who is black, killed three white victims and later described his attack as being racially motivated; he also reportedly yelled ‘Allahu Akbar’ at the time he was arrested, but authorities indicated they found no links to Islamist terrorism.


  3. DK Fennell says:

    Having seen many of your posts, I really am unconvinced you believe knowledge is power.


    • stella says:

      I don’t know what you mean, but I assume that is an insult. Why bother?

      Liked by 2 people

    • lovely says:

      Wow. Why would you pop into someone’s blog just to say something snarky. That’s really rude and unnecessary.

      And if you think you’re going to poke Stella with nonsense I would suggest that it is you who lacks not only knowledge but wisdom also.

      Good grief.

      Liked by 2 people

    • glendl says:

      Seek Help; Sooner Rather Than Later for your Inferiority Complex, Insecurities and overall Powerlessness.


      • glendl says:

        I am not sure how these replies work, but I clicked on my own post to add to it and it shows up as being directed to lovely.
        The information contained in the link appears to be comprehensive, but it may be designed to obscure. The first area of concern is the race of the shooter. On other discussion boards, there is a real fear about being identified as white. Keep in mind, skin color is not the only determinant of race. Latino is on the list, but I am not sure if that is another name for Hispanics. There are Berbers of North Africa, whiter than I am. I am not sure what I am getting at, but what I have learned from other discussions does bother me when I see what Mother Jones has posted.

        *** As I have written before, I have seen a pattern of official malfeasance. Mainly, laws not being enforced. Since humans are involved, there will be mistakes, but there are way too many oversights.


      • glendl says:

        My reply (the seek help comment) above is directed at DK Fennell.


  4. glendl says:

    I am going to address the Las Vegas shooting and the Parkland shootings.
    Las Vegas Strip: Line 25.
    There has not been a final report. Why? Someone is being protected.
    The media is not demanding information under the Freedom of Information Act. Why? They want to protect someone. Is this a conspiracy? Yes. Yes, or there would be a report.

    Parkland: Cruz, Line 19.
    There were 39 visits by law enforcement calls because of Cruz’s violent behavior. No arrests. The last visit was because he had a gun to his foster brothers head. I would like to see a husband remain at home who had a gun to his wife’s head. He would be rightly arrested and firearms seized.
    I believe at this point his firearms had been taken away from him because of his violent behaviors and returned to him before his foster brother incident. He had been expelled from school for bringing bullets to school. The Safe Schools Act requires the expulsion and the individual is to be referred to law enforcement. I believe the sentence for that is 5 years in prison. Cruz should have been in prison when he shot up the school. He had bought firearms legally because his record was clear. It was not clear and he had not been reported to the FBI.
    Cruz was a special education student and as such would have taken psychological exams over the years. Something should have shown up on those tests to raise “red flags” at which point they should have referred him to law enforcement. Why? His most likely victims would be within the school. The other students are to be protected. They weren’t.
    There was a DOJ – school program implemented by 0bama-Holder and the purpose was to bring the percentages of minority students arrested in line with the white students. So, local officials decided no one of school-age would be arrested. There were other things going on, but you get the point.


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