Report Dives Deep Into the 6,000+ Crime Guns Recovered in the City.

Washington, D.C., June 12, 2023 – Last week, as a part of multi-faceted and continued efforts to address gun violence, Rochester Mayor Malik D. Evans released a Gun Trace Data Report compiled by Brady.

The City and Brady entered into a Memorandum of Understanding in late 2021 to conduct an in-depth analysis of firearms used in crimes and recovered by the Rochester Police Department between 2012 and 2022. The 28-page report, redacted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) before its release, provides a high-level overview of crime guns across the country and dives deeper into details around the 6,036 crime guns recovered in the City of Rochester between 2012 and 2022. ATF interprets the Tiahrt Amendment to federal appropriations bills as restricting ATF from publicly releasing disaggregated gun trace data.

Kris Brown, president of Brady, said:

"We applaud Rochester for leading the initiative in identifying the source of crime guns in their city, and we encourage other cities and localities to follow suit. Gun violence plagues every city and community in the U.S., and local officials need individualized solutions to address this epidemic. This report provides critical information about the characteristics, trends, and gun industry sources of crime guns recovered in Rochester, which is necessary to craft evidence-based solutions.”

Rochester Mayor Malik D. Evans said:

“This report synthesizes 11 years’ worth of gun trace data. I appreciate the work of our police officers and the RPD’s data team, and the work of the Brady team to make this information digestible and actionable.”
“In addition, I want to celebrate the efforts of community leaders – specifically the Roc Against Gun Violence Coalition and City Councilmember Willie Lightfoot – for championing this project through several years,” he said.

Rochester is among a small number of states and cities to release a report based on crime gun trace data.

The report notes that, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Uniform Crime Report, Rochester’s overall crime rate falls below the national average. However, Rochester’s homicides, especially firearm-involved homicides, rose between 2019 and 2022 — and at a higher rate than many cities of far greater size.

The report illustrates:

  • 57% of Rochester’s crime guns were purchased out-of-state;

  • The majority of guns recovered by the RPD come from just 10% of dealers

  • Most of the dealers that sold the highest numbers of crime guns are located in Monroe County;

  • Of the crime guns sold by the “top 30” crime gun dealers, 53% came from dealers located in Monroe County; 13% are/were located elsewhere within New York State; and 34% are/were located out-of-state;

  • Dealers with the most traces tend to be independent businesses, but chain stores are also significant sources of crime guns; and

  • Crime guns circulate long after their dealers go out of business.

Rochester Councilmember Willie Lightfoot said:

“Although there are no gun dealers currently operating within the city of Rochester, the city bears the brunt of the impact of gun violence in our community. This report underlines the importance of partnerships across jurisdictions so we can work together to address the supply side of crime guns."

The new Gun Trace Data Report will be used to inform additional initiatives and will guide City leaders in advocating for local and state leaders to identify solutions to address problematic gun dealers and reduce gun violence.

Brady has one powerful mission — to unite all Americans against gun violence. We work across Congress, the courts, and our communities with over 90 grassroots chapters, bringing together young and old, red and blue, and every shade of color to find common ground in common sense. In the spirit of our namesakes Jim and Sarah Brady, we have fought for over 45 years to take action, not sides, and we will not stop until this epidemic ends. It’s in our hands.


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