Justifiable homicides up
So reports USA Today, with the note that it must reflect a "shoot first" mentality. A few problems: they're not up by much, and police justifiable homicides are up, also. One criminologist, who sounds like he spends too much time in the ivory tower, theorizes that because police have been issued more powerful arms, everyone else figures it's OK to shoot.
How about a simpler explanation? It looks to me as if the trend matches closely the trend for murder and violent crime rates. A peak in 1994, a steep decline thru 2000, modest increases since then. If violent attacks decline, shooting in self defense against violent attacks declines.
Hat tip to reader Charles Oldfield...
[As Gary Kleck notes in the article, only a minority of justified self-defense shootings are reported as such to the FBI. Remember reporting is voluntary, many smaller PDs don't take the time, and when reported it's the PD's initial judgment, not the final legal outcome.)