Young men between 18 and 20 years old were most likely to possess a “crime gun” in an analysis of more than 2,000 guns recovered in California and traced in 1999, reports the Associated Press. Researchers at the University of California at Davis looked into patterns of crime-gun ownership. Said the study’s author, Dr. Garen J. Wintemute, “There are patterns. This isn’t random. Guns don’t just arise out of the asphalt available for use.”
The median time from sale to recovery, called “time to crime,” was 6.4 years, longer than the national average of five years. A shorter time to crime – less than three years – was more common among older youths, ages 21 to 24. “The youngest group gets their guns most commonly from someone who’s a generation older and it takes longer for the gun to get from that purchaser to the end user,” Wintemute said.