Confirming More Guns, Less Crime
John R. Lott Jr.
Crime Prevention Research Center
SUNY at Binghamton, Department of Economics
John E Whitley
Crime Prevention Research Center; Institute for Defense Analyses
December 9, 2002
Analyzing county level data for the entire United States from 1977 to 2000, we find annual reductions in murder rates between 1.5 and 2.3 percent for each additional year that a right-to-carry law is in effect. For the first five years that such a law is in effect, the total benefit from reduced crimes usually ranges between about $2 billion and $3 billion per year.
Ayres and Donohue have simply misread their own results. Their own most generalized specification that breaks down the impact of the law on a year-by-year basis shows large crime reducing benefits. Virtually none of their claims that their county level hybrid model implies initial significant increases in crime are correct. Overall, the vast majority of their estimates based on data up to 1997 actually demonstrate that right-to-carry laws produce substantial crime reducing benefits. We show that their models also do an extremely poor job of predicting the changes in crime rates after 1997.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 42
Date posted: January 24, 2003