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  • Writer's pictureArizona House Democrats

New report: More firearms, weaker gun laws driving violent crime in Arizona

Updated: Oct 5, 2022


September 28, 2022

PHOENIX – Arizona has become one of the most dangerous states for criminal gun violence, including homicide and aggravated assault, according to a new report out from Center for American Progress Action Fund.

The report begins its analysis with Republican legislative action after the mass shooting in Tucson on January 8, 2011 that killed six people and injured many others, including then-Representative Gabrielle Giffords. Within weeks following that shooting, the legislature voted to designate a “State Gun” and over the next five months, Republicans “gutted standards for firearm safety courses and made it easier for people to carry weapons in public.” In the decade since, the Republican legislature has persistently bowed to the powerful gun lobby to weaken firearms safety laws, tie the hands of law enforcement and put more Arizonans in danger of violent crime.

"Guns and crime are explicitly linked. Republicans in our legislature have systematically torn down gun safety in Arizona for at least a decade, without regard for the resulting crime and death,” said Assistant Democratic Leader Jennifer Longdon (D-Phoenix). “Our state isn’t just flooded with guns, it’s submerged – only four other states fuel more of their own gun violence. Let that sink in. The guns used in committing crimes originate right here, legally purchased, sold and open-carried on our streets and in our neighborhoods and then make their way into the shadow market. That isn’t due to law enforcement funding or inaction, it’s the direct result of Republican dismantling of crime safety measures.”

The report includes startling data about the increasing danger Arizonans have faced:

· 19.5% increase in murders in Arizona between 2010 and 2020

· 109% increase in aggravated assaults with a firearm between 2010-2020

· 84% of guns used in crimes in Arizona are originally purchased in state

· 69.5% of murders are committed with a gun

"Only Arizona Democrats are taking the steps to address the plague of gun violence, to hold people who commit crimes accountable and to deploy proven strategies to stop crime before it occurs. The Republican-led legislature stops us at every turn," Longdon said.

In just the 2022 session, Longdon introduced 11 gun violence prevention bills, none of which received even one hearing:

  • HB2361: firearm purchases; waiting period; offense (Longdon)

  • HB2362: firearm dealers; firearms transfers; requirements (Longdon)

  • HB2363: firearm sales; permit verification; requirements (Longdon)

  • HB2364: patient information; gun safety; appropriation (Longdon)

  • HB2365: severe threat order of protection (Longdon)

  • HB2366: firearm sales; transfers; background checks (Longdon)

  • HB2367: firearm; ammunition storage; civil penalty (Longdon)

  • HB2368: TPT; exemption; firearm storage devices (Longdon)

  • HB2404: firearm transfers; domestic violence; offenses (Longdon)

  • HB2752: sentencing; concealed weapons permit; surrender (Longdon)

  • HCR2013: firearm sales; transfers; background checks (Longdon)

"We will be back with this legislation in 2023 and in every single session for as long as it takes to restore safety in our communities. Common-sense gun legislation can and will reduce violent crime. We need to be smart about this: we need to invest in programs proven to reduce crime, such as community policing and gun safety,” said Longdon. “If we want to keep our communities and families safe, Republicans need to listen to Arizonans and address common sense gun reform.”


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