“Right-to-Carry and Campus Crime: Evidence from the Not-so-Wild-West”


Abstract: Some state legislatures have considered legislation that would modify laws governing the right to carry a firearm in specific areas including college campuses. Currently firearms are banned on nearly all college campuses throughout the United States. Proponents of the bans on firearms argue that allowing firearms on campuses would likely result in dramatic increases in gun violence. In this paper we investigate the relationship between right-to-carry policies and crime rates on campus using reported crime data from colleges located in five western U.S. states, two of which allow firearms on campuses, for the years 2001-2009. No evidence is found supporting the argument that the right to carry a firearm is associated with an increase in the reported crime rate in any examined category.