ATF

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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

For Immediate Release

July 8, 2009

www.atf.gov

Contact: Special Agent Joseph Green

718-650-4000

ATF Shares 2008 NY State Crime Gun Data

NEW YORK — Ronald B. Turk, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ (ATF), New York Field Division today releases aggregate trace data for crime guns recovered in New York State for calendar year 2008.

A complete review of ATF firearms trace data compiled from Jan.1 to Dec. 31, 2008, from a data set run on 2/12/09, for several regions in New York State reveals the following:

  • 9,558 firearms were submitted to ATF NY to be traced - 6,764 handguns and 2,659 long guns.
  • Statewide, handguns outnumbered long guns by more than 2 to 1.
  • 54% of all firearms recovered were in NY City.
  • In NY City, handguns outnumbered long guns by more than 5 to 1.
  • Each region has unique concerns when dealing with newer weapons.

The 2008 New York State and City statistics are posted on the ATF NY web site; http://www.atf.gov/field/newyork/trace_data.htm.

As noted previously, a key component of ATF’s enforcement mission is the tracing of firearms on behalf of thousands of Federal, State, local, and foreign law enforcement agencies, yet still only about 30% of the crime guns recovered nationwide are submitted to ATF to be traced. In 2002 however, New York State enacted mandatory crime gun tracing through the ATF Crime Gun Center in Brooklyn. The Gun Center is the central repository for all recovered and traced firearms in New York and gives ATF and our law enforcement partners an accurate and timely picture of illegal gun trafficking in the state. The most important piece of information of a traced firearm, other than the purchaser, is the Time to Crime (TTC) statistic. That is, the time period from the initial sale of a weapon by a federally licensed dealer to its recovery by law enforcement. Every gun with a TTC less than 2 years is looked at individually by ATF analysts. A TTC less than 2 years may be a strong indicator of illegal firearms trafficking. A snapshot fact sheet for this 2 year time period is attached to this release.

Trace data tracks the transfer of a firearm from the importer or manufacturer to the gun’s first purchaser. This information can assist law enforcement in ultimately pinpointing the individual(s) who used the gun to commit a crime. ATF conducts traces to identify criminals for prosecution; therefore firearms trace data is considered sensitive criminal intelligence. It is vital that this intelligence be shared with our State and local law enforcement partner to better assist them in investigating and solving violent crimes impacting their communities.

Again, ATF is committed to providing critically important trace data to law enforcement agencies who seek our assistance. To ensure that we furnish the results in a timely manner, we must make certain that our efforts remain focused on criminal investigations, including the analysis of comprehensive crime gun trends and patterns.

By posting these statistics, New Yorkers can now use the Internet to find specific firearm recovery information and gain some insight into these recoveries by learning about the types of offenses and where firearms were recovered within their state.

Special Agent in Charge Turk said, "Ensuring that all crime guns are traced is the first step in identifying potential illegal gun runners. Analyzing these trace results streamlines our investigative focus so we can concentrate on stemming the flow of illegal guns into New York."

More information about ATF and its programs is available at www.atf.gov.

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Statistics from data set run on 2/12/09

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), New York Field Division
2 year or less Time-To-Crime category (Potentially Trafficked Firearms)

The NY City, Westchester, Long Island and Albany regions all had larger handgun (pistol, revolver and derringer) recoveries versus long guns (shotgun and rifle).

Conversely, the Syracuse, Rochester and Buffalo regions all had a larger number of long guns recovered versus handguns.

New York City
  • Total 313 weapons, 88% handguns and 12% long guns.
  • 96% handguns purchased outside NYS and 71% long guns from within NYS.
Westchester
  • Total 36 weapons, 56% handguns and 44% long guns.
  • 75% handguns purchased out of NY State (NYS) while 94% long guns from within NYS.
Long Island
  • Total 51 weapons, 59% handguns and 41% long guns.
  • 97% handguns purchased outside NYS and100% long guns within NYS.
Albany
  • Total 42 weapons, 52% handguns and 48% long guns.
  • 77% of handguns purchased outside of NYS and 95% long guns from within NYS.
Syracuse
  • Total 66 weapons, 45% handguns and 55% long guns.
  • 90% handguns purchased outside NYS and 89% long guns from within NYS.
Rochester
  • Total 35 weapons, 29% handguns and 71% long guns.
  • 50% handguns purchased outside NYS and 68% long guns from within NYS.
Buffalo
  • Total 91 weapons, 48% handguns and 52% long guns.
  • 60% handguns purchased outside NYS and 91% long guns from within NYS.

Region/County identification legend:

New York City
Manhattan, Bronx, Queens, Kings, Richmond
Westchester Region
Westchester, Rockland, Orange, Sullivan, Putnam, Dutchess
Long Island Region
Nassau, Suffolk
Albany Region
Ulster, Columbia, Greene, Delaware, Rensselaer, Albany, Schohaire, Otsego, Schenectady, Montgomery, Herkimer, Fulton, Saratoga, Washington, Warren, Hamilton, Essex, Clinton, Franklin
Syracuse Region
Broome, Tioga, Tompkins, Cortland, Chenango, Madison, Onondaga, Cayuga, Oneida, Oswego, Lewis, Jefferson, St. Lawrence
Rochester Region
Wayne, Monroe, Livingston, Ontario, Yates, Seneca, Steuben, Schuyler, Chemung
Buffalo Region
Niagara, Erie, Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, Allegany, Wyoming, Genesee, Orleans