Accidental shooting deaths, injuries spike over the holidays

Teka Russell sits in East Frankfort Park in Frankfort, Ky., on Saturday, Dec. 10, 2016. She has many special memories with her son, D'nomyar "Denom" Russell, at the park. The 16-year old was fatally shot on Christmas 2014 by his older brother with a new gun he had received hours earlier; the shooting was ruled to be an accident and no charges were filed. Unintentional shootings spike during the holidays, and are more likely to occur than any other time of the year, according to an analysis by The Associated Press and the USA TODAY Network. (AP Photo/David Stephenson)

(AP) – The happiest of seasons is also among the deadliest: Unintentional shootings spike during the holidays, and are more likely to occur than any other time of the year.

That finding comes from an analysis by The Associated Press and the USA TODAY Network, which identified New Year’s Day as the year’s most likely day for accidental shootings.

In all, 32 people were killed nationwide and 59 injured over the past two years from Christmas Eve through New Year’s Day in 2014 and 2015. Unintentional shootings during that period were 50 percent more likely than the rest of the year.

The victims were mostly young males, with a median age of 19. Several factors contribute to the increase, including young people who are off from school and have access to guns.

 

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