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A Longitudinal Examination of Gun Reporting by Middle and High-School Students

NCJ Number
Journal of School Violence Volume: Online Dated: May 2024
Date Published
May 2024

This article reports on a research project aimed at improving the likelihood of gun reporting at school; it describes the authors’ methodology, findings, and implications; and notes that individuals’ ability to make anonymous reports as well as school climate played a role in gun reporting rates.


A variety of factors are associated with the likelihood of reporting guns at school; however, mixed empirical findings hinder our ability to inform policies to reduce school violence. Additionally, many of the established factors are difficult to change over time, and limited attention has been devoted to more malleable factors such as anonymous reporting. To better understand how to improve the likelihood of gun reporting at school, the authors drew from three waves of survey data from 3,633 students in St. Louis, Missouri. Using a multilevel model, they find that perceived risk of victimization and the availability of anonymous reporting increase the likelihood of gun reporting, while negative peer commitment, self-reported delinquency, and victimization decrease the likelihood of reporting. Additional analyses suggest that independent of known risk factors that inhibit reporting, increases in school climate and improvements in availability of anonymous reporting can increase the likelihood of reporting guns at school. (Published Abstract Provided)

Date Published: May 1, 2024