Which D.C. Neighborhoods are Packing the Most Heat?
More guns registered in affluent low-crime D.C. neighborhoods than poor ones.
WASHINGTON, Feb. 9, 2011 -- Two and a half years after the Supreme Court lifted Washington, D.C.'s handgun ban, a surprising segment of the District's population is packing the most heat -- those living in more affluent, low-crime neighborhoods.
According to a Washington Post report on the registration of handguns in the district since the 2008 ruling, more than 1,400 firearms were registered with D.C. Metro Police between June 2008 and December 2010.
Police data shows that most of these registrations occurred in the western half of the District, which consists of several high-income, low-crime neighborhoods, such as Georgetown, Palisades and Chevy Chase, which combined registered nearly 300 guns for a population estimated at just over 93,000.
"Certainly there are some areas that have higher crime rates than others," Andrew Arulanandam, director of public affairs for the National Rifle Association said. "But I think there's one thing we learn from the headlines is that crime can and does happen anywhere, regardless of zip code."
While these safer and well-to-do neighborhoods have registered a high proportion of the city's firearms, more crime-ridden and low-income neighborhoods have seen fewer registrations in comparison.
East of the Anacostia River where crime rates are higher and more poverty exists compared to Northwest D.C., only 240 firearms were registered to a population estimated at just over 145,300, according to police data acquired by the Washington Post.
Wards 7 and 8, which compose this area of the city, were two sectors of the District with the most gun crimes, which include homicide, assault with a deadly weapon and robbery, in 2008.
On the other hand, Ward 3, which has the most registered guns and sits in the city's most affluent area, had the least amount of crime in the district in 2008.
In District of Columbia v. Heller in 2008, the Supreme Court struck down a handgun ban that had been in force since 1976.