America's gun violence problem by the numbers

Gun violence-related deaths rose to nearly 21,000 last year, excluding suicide.

June 7, 2022, 8:04 AM

Several mass shootings last month showed the severity of gun violence in America, although mass shootings only account for a fraction of gun-related deaths across the country.

Last month, a gunman opened fire in a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, killing 10 Black people.

PHOTO: People embrace near a memorial for the shooting victims outside of Tops grocery store on May 20, 2022 in Buffalo, N.Y. 18-year-old Payton Gendron is accused of the mass shooting that killed 10 people at the Tops grocery store on May 14th.
People embrace near a memorial for the shooting victims outside of Tops grocery store on May 20, 2022 in Buffalo, N.Y. 18-year-old Payton Gendron is accused of the mass shooting that killed 10 people at the Tops grocery store on May 14th.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Twenty-one people were killed in a school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, the majority of whom were children.

Juyst days later four people were killed in a shooting at a hospital in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Data gathered by the Gun Violence Archive sheds light on the harrowing impact of gun violence on America.Gun-related deaths have been on the rise in recent years. Excluding suicides, 20,923 people in the U.S. died in gun violence-related incidents last year, a huge increase compared to 19,515 in 2020, according to the Gun Violence Archive.

Suicides account for a large portion of gun-related deaths, with more than 21,000 people dying of suicide by gun every year, from 2014 to 2019, according to data gathered by the Gun Violence Archive.

PHOTO: Number of Gun Violence Related Deaths
Number of Gun Violence Related Deaths
ABC News, Gun Violence Archive

The number of mass shootings has also increased largely in recent years, according to the Gun Violence Archive, which says the number of mass shootings last year was 692, compared to 610 in 2020.

The Gun Violence Archive defines a mass shooting as an incident in which at least four victims were shot, either injured or killed, not including the shooter.

Rise in Mass Shootings
Rise in Mass Shootings
ABC News

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the state with the highest firearm mortality last year was Texas, with 4,164 deaths.

The U.S. is ranked No. 1 globally when it comes to gun ownership, according to the World Population Review.

PHOTO: Firearm Mortality by State in 2020
Firearm Mortality by State in 2020
CDC, ABC News

There are 200 million to 350 million guns in the U.S., according to estimates for this year from the World Population Review.

In the early months of this year, FBI firearm background checks fell significantly compared to last year. Last January, there were nearly 2.6 million checks, compared to more than 4.3 million checks in January 2021, data shows.

Firearm Background Checks
Firearm Background Checks
ABC News, FBI

That data, however, does not represent the number of firearms sold, only the number of background checks initiated through the FBI's National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

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