Volume 39, Issue 3 (May 1994)
Deaths Due to Firearms Injuries in Children
There has been a marked increase in firearms-related deaths in this country over the past several decades. Especially in urban areas this increase has been correlated with a greater availability of handguns. Children have become more common victims of gunfire. Both accidental and homicidal shooting deaths have increased in the lower age groups. We examined deaths due to gunfire in children ten years and younger in Cook County, Illinois, which contains the large city of Chicago. Homicidal shootings predominated in this age group with the most common circumstances being a child struck by a stray bullet. Accidental shooting deaths always occurred when one or more children were playing with a gun they found in the home.