Where New York's crime guns come from

NYS OAG Capital Region likely trafficked guns origin states

This map is clipped from the AG office's interactive report -- it shows which states are the origin for the "likely-trafficked" guns recovered in the Capital Region.

Of the almost 53,000 guns recovered by law enforcement agencies in New York State between 2010 and 2015, 74 percent of those guns originated out of state. And of the 1,872 guns recovered in the Capital Region over that period, 67 percent were from out of state.

Those figures are a from a new report by the New York State Attorney's General Office -- "Target on Trafficking" -- that use federal gun trace data to argue for stricter gun regulations on the federal level and in other states.

The report tags a handful of states with more lax regulations for being the source of many of the crime guns, handguns in particular, that end up in New York.

A clip from the report:

There were certain commonalities among the states that supply New York with its trafficked guns. First, all are "net exporters" of crime guns according to ATF national statistics.[32] Each also generally scores poorly on objective measures of the strength of gun safety laws.[33] In particular, these states lack gun laws fundamental to preventing illegal diversion. For instance, all but one of these states have no requirements for background checks for private sales or at gun shows (Pennsylvania, and only for handguns). And all but one do not require a permit prior to a handgun purchase (North Carolina). This is a stark contrast to the other states along I-95 south, which were responsible for just over 2% of New York's trafficked guns combined. New Jersey, for instance, requires a permit for handguns and long guns, each requiring a background check. Even though New Jersey shares a border with and has several major arteries into New York, it contributed less than one percent of New York's trafficked guns.
From New York's vantage point, the correlation between state and local laws and the source of trafficked guns is undeniable. We believe the weakness of the gun laws in the Iron Pipeline states and Ohio, combined with direct access to New York via interstate highways and public transportation, has made them become the source-of-choice among gun traffickers running guns into New York.[34]

Those "Iron Pipeline" states appear near the top of the AG's list of origin states for guns recovered in the Capital Region, but unusual compared to the rest of New York, so too do Massachusetts and Vermont. And among the 160 Capital Region guns the AG's office analysis figures were "likely-trafficked guns,"* 16 percent come from Vermont -- the most of any state. (Just 1 percent of those guns came from Massachusetts.) Of the Capital Region's likely-trafficked guns, 94 percent were handguns.

The state AG's office report is interesting beyond its subject matter -- it includes an extensive interactive data visualization, something more like you'd see in a media publication. We don't think we've seen a state agency post a report like this before.
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* The report includes a walkthrough of how guns were counted for that category. A large component of the score is how short (or long) the period is between when a gun was bought and when it was used in a crime.

Earlier on AOA: Where the guns come from

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