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Biden Gun Prosecutions Continue Rapid Pace in FY23

So far during the Biden administration, convictions for federal weapons violations have averaged about 15 percent higher than during the Trump years while matching or exceeding record highs in 2005-06. That pace continues this federal fiscal year, according to a new report by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University. The latest data TRAC obtained from the Justice Department showed 992 federal weapons convictions in January, up from 731 in December and on pace to reach almost 9,000 for the fiscal year ending in September. That would top every year since 2006 except fiscal 2022, when they reached 9,559.


The highest number and highest rate of prosecutions were in Missouri's Eastern District, home to St. Louis, a city with perennially high rates of gun violence. Other than that district, though, federal weapons prosecutions and convictions are not concentrated in districts with the nation's largest urban centers. The Southern District of New York (Manhattan) ranked 80th out of the 90 federal districts covering the 50 states. The Central District of California (Los Angeles) ranked 83rd, New York's Eastern District (Brooklyn) ranked 85th, Massachusetts 86th and the North District of California (San Francisco) 87th. After St. Louis, the districts with the highest numbers were Tennessee West (Memphis), New Mexico, Alabama South (Mobile), and Iowa North (Cedar Rapids). TRAC ranked all 90 districts so far in fiscal 2023 in a chart. Two federal district judges in Western Tennessee were among those sentencing the most defendants for weapons violations compared with any other federal district court judge across the country.

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A daily report co-sponsored by Arizona State University, Criminal Justice Journalists, and the National Criminal Justice Association

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