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Shots Fired: Gun Violence in the United States

Howard Rahtz
Shots Fired: Gun Violence in the United States
ISBN: 978-1-62637-884-1
ISBN: 978-1-62637-890-2
2020/222 pages/LC: 2019054047
"This well-documented work will be a useful starting point for both academics and the general public engaging in the gun debate." —Library Journal

"A highly readable, thorough, and insightful examination of mass shootings and other gun violence. Shots Fired is essential for all—from informed citizens and students to police and policymakers—who are  concerned about how to stop these all too frequent tragedies." —John Eck, University of Cincinnati


Mass killings. Gang violence. Street crimes. Suicides. Accidental shootings. The United States is enduring a literal epidemic of gun violence. Howard Rahtz, drawing on decades of experience as a police officer all too familiar with the horrors that guns can cause, delves deeply into the nature and impact of this epidemic.

Rahtz explores each element of the triangle of ability, desire, and opportunity that typically characterizes gun violence. Going further, he also suggests practical, "left of bang" preventative actions—steps that could limit the violence while respecting contentious Second Amendment rights.


Howard Rahtz served for nearly two decades with the Cincinnati Police Department, retiring in 2007 as commander of the Vice Control Unit. He currently teaches at police academies in the area and speaks nationally on police reform. He is the author, most recently, of Race, Riots, and the Police.


  • Foreword—Frank Straub.
  • Gun Violence in the United States.
  • The Right to Keep and Bear Arms.
  • Firearms and Violence.
  • Black Market Guns.
  • The Crime Triangle: Ability to Kill.
  • The Crime Triangle: Opportunity to Kill.
  • The Crime Triangle: Desire to Kill.
  • Rampage Killings.
  • Daily Homicides.
  • The Police Response.
  • Moving Left of Bang.
  • Do Something!