The FBI has reported that good guys with guns stop active shooting incidents 4.4% of the time, but John Lott, founder of the Crime Prevention Research Center, believes the actual rate is 34.4%.
Lott claims that the FBI’s numbers are distorted due to unreliable data and misjudgments, leading to misleading conclusions.
“It’s garbage,” Lott told The Washington Times. “They should be embarrassed.”
One issue Lott raises is the FBI’s reliance on news accounts, which he says are less likely to cover instances of armed citizens intervening in active shootings.
Moreover, he points to the FBI’s narrow definition of an active shooter incident and their criteria for who qualifies as a “good guy.”
In a statement to The Times, the FBI acknowledged limitations in its data collection: “There is no mandated database collection or central intake point for reporting active shooter incidents, which exists for other crimes.”
They also noted that every effort is made to include additional incidents that meet the criteria after the publication of their reports.
Lott’s analysis of active shooter incidents from 2014 to 2021 shows that out of 360 incidents, 124 were stopped by an armed civilian (34.4%) of the time.
In places where carrying weapons is not heavily restricted, the rate is closer to 60%.