ANN ARBOR -- Gun shows don't contribute to increased homicide or suicide rates, according to results of a study announced Wednesday by the University of Michigan's Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.
The joint University of Michigan and University of Maryland examination of gun death data in the weeks surrounding more than 3,400 California and Texas gun shows concluded tighter regulation of the flea market-like operations did nothing to reduce firearms-related deaths in the following month.
Researchers compared gunshot death data surrounding every known gun show in California and Texas between 1994 and 2004. California has some of the most stringent gun sale rules in the country. Texas is among the least restrictive.
"To the extent that 33 regulations such as those in place in California reduce any deleterious effects of gun shows, one might expect to detect a larger effect in a relatively unregulated state such as Texas. Our results, however, provide no evidence to suggest that gun shows lead to a substantial increase in the number of homicides or suicides in either California or Texas," said U-M professor Brian Jacob, head of the Ford School's Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy.