Gainesville Police Department Officer Casey Walsh is decisive, strong, confident, focused, fair and fearless. Her partner, police officer Stern, is all of those things too. Officer Stern is also playful, energetic, affectionate, gentle and good with children. Both officers are now dedicated to removing guns from criminals — as the first GPD officer and dog to be trained in gun odor. Gainesville has a gun problem. The state of Florida has more guns than any other state. The actual number is unknown, but based on the over 2 million concealed weapon permits issued by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Division of Licensing, the number of guns in Florida is large.
With concealed carry licenses only representing a small percentage of gun owners, and a total population in Florida of over 21 million people, it would be reasonable to assume there are at least 21 million guns. If that is accurate, then in Gainesville, there are somewhere in the ballpark of 130,000 guns. Gainesville also has a crime problem. Alachua County has the third-most violent crimes per capita in Florida, per the Florida Department of Law Enforcement report on violent crimes. Violent crimes include homicide, aggravated assault, robbery, and rape. When removing counties with less than 50,000 people from the list, Alachua County moves to the most violent county.
In Florida, handguns are used in 73% of homicides, 31% of aggravated assaults, 38% of robberies and 1% of rapes (87% of rapes are committed with no weapon). Of these violent offenses, aggravated assaults represent 68% of the total. In Florida during 2019, over 17,000 people were victims of aggravated assault while the perpetrator used a firearm. [full article]