Chicago Tribune Finds 27,000 Illinois Residents Failed to Surrender Firearms or Account for Firearms After FOID Card Was Revoked

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The Chicago Tribune dataviz team recently completed and published an analysis of Illinois State Police and U.S. Census Bureau data related to FOID revocations, and discovered that as many as 27,000 residents of Illinois over the past four years (2015-2019) have failed to surrender or otherwise account for their guns after police revoked their Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) cards.

In Arlington Heights, 103 FOID cards were revoked between 2015 and 2019 and a rate of 1.32 per 1,000 Arlington Heights adults (18 years of older) were noncompliant in surrendering or accounting for their weapons.

The Chicago Tribune calculated that 79 FOID cardholders did not account for their weapons after having their licenses revoked, or 76.7% of all revocations in Arlington Heights.

The Chicago Tribune also calculated that 52 noncompliant local residents made serious inquiries about purchasing guns from federally licensed dealers before losing their FOID cards. The figure did not necessarily mean a sale was made, but law-enforcement officials typically view the figure as an indication of a gun purchase.

The Arlington Heights non-compliant rate of 1.32 (i.e., the rate of FOID cardholders who did not account for their weapons after having their licenses stripped per 1,000 adult residents (communities of population ≥ 10,000) was at a highly favorable position compared to the communities studied. Wilmette, Illinois had the most favorable noncompliance rate of 0.463. Mount Vernon, Illinois had the most unfavorable rating at 10.4.

All suburbs near Arlington Heights had favorable rates compared to all communities in the State of Illinois.

Suburbs near Arlington Heights with more favorable rates than Arlington Heights were Buffalo Grove, Elk Grove Village, Mount Prospect, and Prospect Heights

Suburbs near Arlington Heights with less favorable rates than Arlington Heights were Des Plaines, Hoffman Estates, Palatine, Park Ridge, Rolling Meadows, Schaumburg, Streamwood, Vernon Hills and Wheeling.

Schaumburg’s rate, for example, was 1.76. Among the northwest suburbs near Arlington Heights, the Village of Streamwood had the most unfavorable rating of 2.41. Evanston at 0.976 had a more favorable rating compared to Arlington Heights.

The most common reasons for FOID revocation in Arlington Heights were #1) a history of a mental health problem*, #2) a felony conviction in any state, and #3) a prohibition of possession of a firearm usually triggered by a court order as part of a defendant’s court supervision or probation.

Mental Health includes an in-patient admission to mental health facility or someone judged a clear and present danger.


Chicago Tribune | Look up how many people in your town had their FOID cards revoked – and how many haven’t accounted for their guns



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