At least 69 mass shootings have been stopped by armed civilians since 1990, data collected by the Crime Prevention Research Center shows. This flies in the face of the media (examples here, here, and here) arguing mass shootings are caused by lack of gun control. The truth is, armed civilians stop mass shootings regularly, and one major way to dampen the amount of mass shootings is to allow people to carry guns wherever they go.

One recent example of armed civilians stopping a mass shooting was in February, when an armed robber drew his weapon at a gun range. After killing two people, armed civilians spring into action and killed him before he had a chance to kill others.

These instances where a good guy with a gun stopped mass shootings are corroborated by a 2018 analysis of FBI data, which reveals that armed civilians are 94% effective at stopping would-be mass shooters. This dispels the “innocent victim” myth that the media likes to use to explain away the massive number of mass shootings stopped by armed civilians.

So why aren’t more mass shootings stopped by armed civilians? Because the shootings often take place in gun free zones, where armed civilians obviously cannot draw their guns because there aren’t any. A 2019 study by the Crime Research Prevention Center found that 94% of mass shootings happened in gun free zones.

Even though 94% of mass shootings happened in gun free zones, the Crime Research Prevention Center has found that roughly 1 in 6 mass shootings were stopped by an armed civilian who was legally carrying a handgun.

Another reason the “good guy with a gun” notion is true is because, according to surveys with convicted felons, 40% decided not to commit a crime because they thought the victim had a gun. Additionally, more than 1 in 3 convicted felons had been “scared off, shot at, wounded, or captured by an armed victim.” This shows that guns do regularly stop crimes in progress and even may stop premeditated crimes from occurring.

All this data shows that shooters are regularly stopped by “a good guy with a gun” despite what the media claims, and blaming lack of gun control for mass shootings is deeply misguided. To stop more active shooters, allowing citizens to carry guns would be the best solution.

Source: John Paluska,