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Denver by the Data, Vol. 2: Lawyers, Guns & Money

This is the second installment of Denver by the Data, a quasi-monthly, data-driven belly flop into different topics of importance, inevitability and infamy to the city. We're looking at lawyers, guns and money this week.

Total number of attorneys registered with the Colorado Supreme Court with a Denver address: 10,655 (active: 9,246; inactive: 1,409)

In Colorado, there are 38,479 registered lawyers in all. Looking at the per-capita breakdown, the city should have about one-seventh of the state's lawyers, but it's got twice that many.

Cases filed in Denver County Court in 2013: 179,506

Cases that reached a disposition in 2013: 186,093

Almost two-thirds of all cases filed in Denver in 2013  -- 105,254 -- were traffic citations, while there were 6,499 felonies and 31,372 civil cases filed. There are more than 21,000 court appearances a month.

Parking magistrates heard an additional 37,400 cases and reviewed 14,800 written disputes.


FBI data on background checks for gun sales is broken down by state, not city. Colorado had 413,284 firearm background checks in 2014. That ranked 18th among the 50 states. The U.S. had nearly 21 million checks in all.

In comparison, Kentucky had an absurd amount of the total checks -- nearly 2.5 million, or about 570 per 1,000 residents. Colorado had about 80 per 1,000 residents. The U.S. average: 66.

This probably translates to more than 50,000 guns sold to Denverites in 2014. If national per-capita stats are applied, there are more than 600,000 guns in city limits.

Guns confiscated at Denver International Airport in 2014: 70 (11 unloaded, 59 loaded)

That's good enough for fifth in the U.S. after Dallas-Fort Worth, Atlanta, Phoenix and Houston. La Guardia's total for the year: 1.

Gun deaths in Denver (2000-2011): 831 (including 342 homicides, double the statewide rate).

That's about 70 deaths and 30 homicides a year.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) traced 2,337 firearms in Colorado in 2012. Texas was the top source state for these weapons besides Colorado.


Metro Denver GDP: $178,860,000,000 (18th, between San Jose and Baltimore, three spots higher than its 21st-ranked population)

Metro Denver GDP per capita: $61,595 (12th among 50 most populous MSAs, between Minneapolis and Dallas)

Projected city budget (gross expenditures) for 2015: $2,499,872,000, up from estimated $2,336,429,000 in 2014

The airport, at $597 million, is the top expenditure for 2015, and safety, at $518 million, is second.

Output of the Denver Mint (2014): 6,789,080,000 coins or about 18 million coins a day

That's nearly 300 million more than the Philadelphia Mint, the only other facility where circulating coins are made in the U.S. (Paper currency is made by the U.S. Bureau of Printing and Engraving in Washington, D.C., and Fort Worth, Texas.)

Total pennies made in Denver: 4,155,600,000 or $41,556,000

Total nickels: 570,720,000 or $28,536,000

Total dimes: 1,177,000,000 or $117,700,000

Total quarters: 862,800,000 or $215,700,000

Total half-dollars: 2,100,000 or $1,05,000

Total dollar coins: 20,860,000 (15.26 million were presidential collector coins) or $20,860,000

Total value of all coins minted in Denver in 2014: $425,402,000

Denver could almost cover its entire annual safety budget for the city with all of these coins.

Read more articles by Eric Peterson.

Eric is a Denver-based tech writer and guidebook wiz. Contact him here.
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