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Five Women Killed at Home in Atkins; Arkansas Moms Demand Action, Students Demand Action Respond

December 27, 2020

The Arkansas chapter of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots networks, released the following statement after five women, including three children, were killed at a home near Atkins. Reporting from the Arkansas Democrat Gazette indicated that “authorities believe at least some of the victims had been shot.” Pope County Sheriff Shane Jones described the case as “domestic-related.”

“Our hearts go out to everyone affected by this devastating shooting,” said Amy Gillespie, a volunteer with the Arkansas chapter of Moms Demand Action. “And we’re reminded of the deadly intersection of guns and domestic violence. We can and must do more to build a safer Arkansas.”

Arkansas has weak gun laws, including those pertaining to domestic violence and firearms. Arkansas does not prohibit abusers convicted of domestic violence misdemeanors or under restraining orders from having guns. Arkansas also does not require background checks on all gun sales.

In an average year, nearly 550 people die by guns in Arkansas; Arkansas has the ninth highest rate of gun deaths in the United States. Black people in Arkansas are 7 times more likely to die by gun homicide than white people. Despite this, lawmakers in Arkansas continue to introduce legislation that would weaken gun laws and make the state less safe, particularly for Black people in Arkansas. More information about gun violence in Arkansas is available through EveryStat here.

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