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How Firearm Thefts in Minnesota Compare to Other States

imageForEntry35 BXDU.S. firearm sales have surged in recent years, a trend that has coincided with a steep increase in gun violence. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a record number of Americans died of gun-related injuries in 2021. While law-abiding citizens with no intention of engaging in criminal activity account for the vast majority of gun purchases, the influx of guns in American households increases the likelihood of firearms falling into the wrong hands, particularly through theft.

According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, more than 1 million firearms were reported stolen by private citizens in the five years from 2017 to 2021. Stolen guns are most commonly burgled from homes and vehicles, but some are also taken directly from a person. Though many stolen guns are ultimately linked to crimes, they are typically first sold on the black market.

Semi-automatic pistols are by far the most commonly stolen firearm type, accounting for over 70% of all reported firearm thefts in the U.S. in the last five years. And all of the top five stolen calibers – .45, .22, .380, .40, and 9mm – are widely available in semi-automatic handguns. (Here is a look at the gun calibers most likely to be used for crime in every state.)

ATF records show that an average of 1,559 firearms were reported stolen from private citizens in Minnesota each year between 2017 and 2021. Adjusting for population, this comes out to about 27.3 stolen firearms annually for every 100,000 residents, the 11th fewest among states.

An estimated 29.2% of all the firearms reported stolen between 2017 and 2021 were ultimately recovered in-state.

All data in this story is from the ATF’s report National Firearms Commerce and Trafficking Assessment (NFCTA): Crime Guns – Volume Two. Firearms stolen from gun stores and gunmakers were not considered in this ranking.

Rank State Annual firearm theft rate (per 100,000 people) Avg. num. of firearms stolen from private citizens annually Stolen firearms recovered in state (%)
1 Mississippi 185.1 5,460 24.3
2 Alabama 165.7 8,353 28.4
3 Louisiana 155.1 7,170 30.5
4 South Carolina 150.8 7,825 27.3
5 Georgia 132.3 14,288 26.2
6 Arkansas 131.8 3,989 33.0
7 Alaska 130 953 36.2
8 Missouri 117.9 7,270 28.3
9 Tennessee 116.7 8,143 27.3
10 Oklahoma 111 4,426 27.0
11 New Mexico 106.8 2,260 23.8
12 Kentucky 103.9 4,684 36.5
13 North Carolina 103.9 10,961 28.9
14 West Virginia 97 1,730 19.7
15 Montana 88.7 980 30.3
16 Texas 85.6 25,270 24.6
17 Nevada 83.1 2,614 24.7
18 Indiana 77.3 5,260 26.3
19 Kansas 76 2,230 25.8
20 Arizona 70 5,090 27.9
21 Wyoming 64.7 374 29.5
22 Michigan 64.3 6,462 26.5
23 Florida 64 13,940 29.4
24 Virginia 60.4 5,224 26.5
25 Colorado 57.4 3,336 24.4
26 Oregon 57.1 2,423 26.8
27 Ohio 56.8 6,697 26.0
28 Idaho 53.6 1,018 28.0
29 South Dakota 53.2 476 31.1
30 Washington 52.6 4,074 29.1
31 North Dakota 45.8 355 26.8
32 Pennsylvania 45.3 5,870 26.9
33 Utah 42.1 1,406 33.5
34 Maine 40.8 559 13.8
35 Iowa 39.1 1,249 27.3
36 Vermont 39.1 253 19.3
37 Delaware 37.8 379 24.0
38 Nebraska 37.3 733 35.7
39 Illinois 33.7 4,265 30.0
40 Minnesota 27.3 1,559 29.2
41 New Hampshire 26.8 372 28.9
42 Connecticut 24 866 18.8
43 California 21.7 8,509 14.7
44 Wisconsin 21.3 1,255 0.1
45 Maryland 18.3 1,130 22.8
46 Hawaii 12.1 174 13.6
47 Rhode Island 10.7 117 21.4
48 New York 8.9 1,766 14.6
49 New Jersey 6.8 629 25.3
50 Massachusetts 5.4 378 22.0
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