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Do concealed weapons help to deter crime? New Texas Study Says No

By October 6, 2015December 9th, 2020Weapons Charges

Believe it or not, every state in the nation allows its citizens to carry concealed weapons, assuming that certain criteria are met. Most of these states’ laws are based on the idea that allowing private citizens to carry concealed weapons is an effective crime deterrent. In fact, Fox News even wrote last year that, “ A dramatic spike in the number of Americans with permits to carry concealed weapons coincides with an equally stark drop in violent crime.”

But according to a new study conducted at Texas A&M University, this conclusion is a bit far-reaching. Instead, say the researchers, the connection between concealed permits and crime rates falling could have to do with the economy, or with community policing tactics.

Collecting County Data

To come to their conclusion, researchers at Texas A&M University analyzed data county by county, rather than looking at general crime rates before and after concealed carry legislation took effect (which is what the study cited by Fox News, above, did). The counties that they analyzed totaled more than 500, and included counties in Florida, Michigan, Texas, and Pennsylvania.

Researchers Conclude that Concealed Weapons Have No Effect on Crime Rates

After analyzing the data, the researchers concluded that concealed weapons have no positive effect on crime rates. Charles D. Phillips, the lead researchers behind the study and a health science professor at A&M University was quoted by Oregon Live as saying, “This research suggests that the rate at which concealed handgun licenses are issued and crime rates are independent of one another – crime does not drive concealed handgun licenses; concealed handgun licenses do not drive crime.”

Gun Crimes in Texas

Keeping the above in mind, it is interesting to note that Texas issues more gun permits every year than do most states in the nation – in 2015, the number of gun permits held by Texas citizens was 519,000 – the only states with more were Florida, Georgia, and Pennsylvania. Furthermore, Texas also has a high number of gun crimes reported every year; in 2011, there were 699 total firearm murders in Texas, putting it second on the list (California had 1,220). It’s hard to say that there is not a connection between the ability to legally own a gun and gun violence.

If You Have Been Charged with a Gun Crime, Call an Attorney

If you have been charged with a gun crime in Texas, you need to call an attorney as soon as possible. At the Hampton Criminal Defense Attorneys, PLLC, we are ready to represent you. To learn more, call us today at 817-877-5200.


Jeff Hampton

After getting his Juris Doctor from the University of Houston Law Center, Jeff Hampton began practicing criminal law in Texas in 2005. Before becoming a felony crimes lawyer, he worked as a prosecutor for the Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office – experience he uses to anticipate and cast doubt on the arguments that will be used against his clients. Over the course of his career, he has helped countless Texans protect their rights and get the best possible outcome in their criminal cases. He has been named one of the 3 Best DUI Lawyers in Fort Worth, recognized by Expertise, National Trial Lawyers, Avvo, and others, and he is Lead Counsel rated.