Justice Breyer continued: Or domestic disputes: Another study found that a woman is five times more likely to be killed by an abusive partner if that partner has access to a gun. Brief for Educational Fund 8 (citing A. Zeoli, R. Malinski, & B. Turchan, Risks and Targeted Interventions: Firearms in Intimate Partner Violence, 38 Epidemiologic Revs. 125 (2016); J. Campbell et al., Risk Factors for Femicide in Abusive Relationships: Results From a Multisite Case Control Study, 93 Am. J. Pub. Health 1089, 1092 (2003)). Or suicides: A study found that men who own handguns are three times as likely to commit suicide than men who do not and women who own handguns are seven times as likely to commit suicide than women who do not. D. Studdert et al., Handgun Ownership and Suicide in California, 382 New England J. Med. 2220, 2224 (June 4, 2020).
Consider, too, interactions with police officers. The presence of a gun in the hands of a civilian poses a risk to both officers and civilians. Amici prosecutors and police chiefs tell us that most officers who are killed in the line of duty are killed by firearms; they explain that officers in States with high rates of gun ownership are three times as likely to be killed in the line of duty as officers in States with low rates of gun ownership. Brief for Prosecutors Against Gun Violence as Amicus Curiae 23–24; Brief for Former Major City Police Chiefs as Amici Curiae 13–14, and n. 21, (citing D. Swedler, M. Simmons, F. Dominici, & D. Hemenway, Firearm Prevalence and Homicides of Law Enforcement Officers in the United States, 105 Am. J. Pub. Health 2042, 2045 (2015)). They also say that States with the highest rates of gun ownership report four times as many fatal shootings of civilians by police officers compared to States with the lowest rates of gun ownership. Brief for Former Major City Police Chiefs as Amici Curiae 16 (citing D. Hemenway, D. Azrael, A. Connor, & M. Miller, Variation in Rates of Fatal Police Shootings Across US States: The Role of Firearm Availability, 96 J. Urb. Health 63, 67 (2018)). These are just some examples of the dangers that firearms pose.
The logic regarding misleading statistics and guns in high-crime area homes applies to guns in high-crime cities and states. It is also important to keep in mind that the United States is one of the most populous countries in the world. Therefore, the fact that there are far more guns in the United States than other countries is not surprising.