South Dakota

  • Suicides make up 80% of all firearm deaths in South Dakota.
  • Nearly half of all suicides in South Dakota are by firearm.
  • In 2018, there were 91 firearm suicide deaths in South Dakota.
  • South Dakota’s firearm suicide rate is higher than most states’ — in 2018, South Dakota had the 16th highest firearm suicide rate in the country.

Data

The firearm suicide rate in South Dakota increased 37% over the last decade (2009-2018) and in 2018, 91 South Dakotans died by firearm suicide – the highest number of firearm suicides on record in South Dakota. In 2018, the firearm suicide rate in South Dakota was 1.5 times the United States’ rate.

Firearm Deaths in South Dakota
2009-2018

Number of deaths

Suicide
Homicide
Other

The “other” category is defined as any firearm death that is not defined by the CDC as a homicide or a suicide. This could include unintentional, undetermined, and legal intervention. To obtain the number of deaths in the “other” category, the total number of firearm suicide deaths and firearm homicide deaths were subtracted from the overall firearm deaths in a given year.

* Denotes years in which fewer than 10 firearm suicide or homicide deaths were reported. The CDC suppresses data in which fewer than 10 deaths are reported. For any year in which there were less than 10 firearm homicides or suicides reported, these deaths are collapsed into the “other” category.

Firearm Suicide Rates in South Dakota and the United States
2009-2018

Age-adjusted rate per 100,000

South Dakota
United States

Firearm Suicide Rates by County
2009-2018

Age-Adjusted Firearm Suicide Rate per 100,000

  • 6.42 to 8.52
  • 8.53 to 10.63
  • 10.64 to 12.74
  • 12.75 to 14.62
  • Suppressed /
    Unreliable

The CDC suppresses data in which fewer than 10 deaths are reported in a given time frame and considers firearm suicide rates based on fewer than 20 deaths “statistically unreliable.” Counties that meet this criteria are labeled “Suppressed/Unreliable.”

 

Demographics

The majority of suicide decedents are males. In South Dakota, White (non Latino) and American Indian/Alaska Native males in particular are disproportionately impacted by firearm suicide.

Firearm Suicide Deaths in South Dakota by Sex
2014-2018

Male
Female

Firearm Suicide Rates in South Dakota by Sex, Race, and Ethnicity
2014-2018

Age-Adjusted Rate Per 100,000

Male
Female

The CDC considers firearm suicide rates based on fewer than 20 deaths “statistically unreliable” and suppresses firearm suicide rates based on fewer than 10 deaths. Fewer than 20 firearm suicides were reported during this time period for the following races and Hispanic Origin category and therefore are omitted from the above chart: American Indian/ Alaska Native females, Asian/ Pacific Islander females and males, Black females and males, and Hispanic/Latino females and males.

Notes:

  • The most recently available CDC data is 2018; as such, 2018 data is used where appropriate.
  • Unless otherwise specified, statistics reflect 5-year averages (2014-2018).
  • All rates listed are age-adjusted in order to allow for accurate comparisons between populations with differing age distributions.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics. Suicide Deaths and Rates per 100,000. WONDER Online Database, 1999-2018. Available: http://wonder.cdc.gov/ucd-icd10.html.

 

This page was last updated on March 19, 2020.