Data Projects - Minnesota Violent Death Reporting System - Minnesota Department of Health

Injury and Violence Prevention Data Projects
Minnesota Violent Death Reporting System (MNVDRS)

Violent deaths can have a profound impact on Minnesotans and Minnesota communities. Minnesotans who survive violent experiences are often left struggling with long-term physical, psychological, and emotional consequences. Violence erodes entire communities – reducing productivity, decreasing property values, disrupting social services, and making people feel unsafe in the places where they live, work, learn and play.

To understand violent deaths and prevent them from occurring, we need to understand the facts. The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) is working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to gather, store, and assess information about violent deaths in Minnesota.

Gathering information

MNVDRS gathers information to learn more about those who die through violent means. Collecting this information can help us understand how frequently violent deaths are occurring, and identify themes so we can see where we can improve our systems and intervene to prevent these deaths. These data will help us understand which communities need additional help in preventing violent deaths, so we can better target support.

MNVDRS collects data on:

  • Homicides;
  • Suicides;
  • Deaths of undetermined intent, and;
  • Intentional and unintentional firearm deaths.

The information is gathered through death certificates and death investigation reports from medical examiners, coroners, law enforcement to figure out the circumstances leading to the death and are shared within the National Violent Death Reporting System run by the CDC.

As a system, MNVDRS:

  • Gathers and links detailed investigative information. MNVDRS collects over 600 unique data elements to provide context about violent death. These data elements help provide a complete picture of the circumstances that contribute to violent deaths. These data elements look at life circumstances two weeks before the death occurred.
  • Helps identify emerging issues.
  • Combines data about deaths that occurred during the same violent event to help identify if there is a link between multiple homicides, or a suicide and a homicide.
  • Collects information on the suspect and the relationship to the victim to better characterize homicide.

The data collected is anonymous and is not personally identifiable.

Get Involved

Contact Jon Roesler at to learn more about MNDVRS.

Additional Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – National Violent Death Report System – Learn more about the National Violent Death Reporting System, participating states, and success stories.

Updated Friday, 16-Jul-2021 14:47:53 CDT