What to know about Kansas City's homicide rate, Missouri gun laws after Chiefs' parade shooting

One person died and 22 others were injured in the Kansas City shooting.

February 15, 2024, 8:48 PM

In the wake of Kansas City's deadly shooting that erupted at the end of the Chiefs' Super Bowl parade, the record-breaking homicide rate in Missouri's largest city and the state's gun laws has faced renewed attention.

One person died and 22 others were injured after gunfire rang out outside Union Station on Wednesday as Chiefs fans were leaving a parade and rally, according to police.

Two juveniles have been detained by authorities amid the investigation and charges have not yet been filed, according to Kansas City police.

A third juvenile who had been detained in connection with the shooting was determined not to be involved and is no longer in custody, a police spokesperson confirmed to ABC News Thursday evening.

People take cover during a shooting at Union Station during the Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl LVIII victory parade on February 14, 2024, in Kansas City, Missouri.
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

More than 800 law enforcement officers were on duty at the time of the shooting, Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas during the briefing.

In 2023, Kansas City Police Department's daily homicide analysis showed 182 homicides, 12 more than took place in 2022 and three more than the previous all-time high in the city, 179 homicides in 2020.

KCPD's daily homicide analysis report indicates that a majority of the homicides reported in 2023 involved a firearm.

When asked about Kansas City's homicide rate in relation to Wednesday's mass shooting, the mayor called attention to the difference between daily crime and this public attack.

"I grew up in some of Kansas City's most challenged neighborhoods, usually if you were staying out of trouble, the trouble didn't come to you," Lucas said in an interview with KSHB after the shooting.

"This is rather different, this is something where a bunch of people are at a parade. They're not buying or selling drugs, they're not subject to retaliation," he added.

Lucas, who was present at the Super Bowl parade, called the shooting, "an incredible disappointment."

In 2021, Missouri had the ninth-highest rate of gun deaths in the U.S., according to firearm mortality by state data from the Centers for Disease Control.

The midwestern state also has some of the laxest gun laws in any state in the US, according to Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, which ranks Missouri as having the third-weakest gun laws.

Missouri began allowing gun owners to carry concealed weapons in 2003, requiring training and a permit issued by the county sheriff, however, in 2007, the law requiring a permit to buy a handgun was repealed, according to the Giffords Law Center.

After the permit law was repealed, there was an estimated 47.3% increase in firearm homicide, according to research from the American Journal of Public Health.

No background check is required for Missouri residents to purchase a firearm and there is no ban on assault weapons, according to Missouri state law.

A Kansas City police office responds after shots were fired near the Kansas City Chiefs' Super Bowl LVIII victory parade, Feb. 14, 2024, in Kansas City, Missouri.
Andrew Caballero-reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

In Feb. 2023, Missouri's House voted against banning minors from openly carrying firearms without adult supervision in public. The proposal failed by a 104-39 vote.

"While it may be intuitive that a 14-year-old has no legitimate purpose, it doesn't actually mean that they're going to harm someone. We don't know that yet," Rep. Tony Lovasco said in response to the decision at the time, according to AP. "Generally speaking, we don't charge people with crimes because we think they're going to hurt someone."

In 2021, Missouri established the "Second Amendment Preservation Act," which created additional protections for the right to bear arms and penalizes police for enforcing federal gun laws.

However, in 2023, Federal U.S. District Court Judge Brian Wimes ruled Missouri's law was unconstitutional, "invalid, null, void, and of no effect," according to his decision.