"What about the use of firearms of self-protection? Again there is no clear-cut answer. Each year, 2.5 million times, victims use guns for defensive purposes, a number that is not surprising considering about one-third of U.S. Households contain guns. Gary Kleck has estimated that armed victims kill between 1,500 and 2,800 potential felons each year and wound between 8,700 and 16,000. Kleck’s research shows, ironically, that by fighting back victims kill far more criminals than the estimated 250 to 1,000 killed annually by police. Kleck has found that the risk of collateral injury is relatively rare and that potential victims should be encouraged to fight back. In a recent study conducted with colleague Jongyeon Tark, Kleck reviewed more than 27,000 contact crime incidents and found that when compared to nonresistance, self-protection significantly reduced the likelihood of property loss and injury and that most forceful tactics, including resistance with a gun, appear to have the strongest affects in reducing the risk of injury. Importantly, the research indicated that resistance did not contribute to injury in any meaningful way. The conclusion: it is better to fight than flee."
Criminology: Theories, Patterns & Typologies 11th Edition.
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