40 guns collected from NYPD ‘no questions asked’ buyout event

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STATEN ISLAND, NY – In an effort to keep guns off the streets of Staten Island, NYPD agents spent their Saturday hosting a gun buyback event in Tompkinsville.

The event was held at the Mount Sinai United Christian Church from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. Various NYPD members were in attendance, as well as the event’s sponsor, District Attorney Michael McMahon.

Community members who brought weapons to the event were able to remain anonymous, with a “no questions asked” policy in effect.

The event, McMahon explained, is part of a multi-pronged approach to ending gun violence on Staten Island.

“It’s an arrow in our quiver in the fight against gun violence here on Staten Island,” McMahon told Advance / SILive.com. “We have brought all of our partners together to have a positive impact, and that is manifesting itself in a fairly good result for today’s efforts.”

The event was sponsored by District Attorney Michael McMahon. (Courtesy of Richmond County DA)

During Saturday’s event, approximately 40 firearms were recovered. McMahon said every firearm returned is “one or more lives protected or saved”.

Frank Vega, deputy chief and commanding officer of Patrol Borough Staten Island, shared similar sentiments.

“It gives us the chance to get guns off the streets. It’s all a question of consequences, ”he explained.

He told Advance / SILive.com that accidents can happen when young children, teens or desperate adults get their hands on a gun. He further explained that “we must do all we can as a community” to prevent guns from circulating on the streets.

NYPD officer Bishop Victor A. Brown, who is the pastor of Mount Sinai United Christian Church, said it was one of many gun buyback programs that the police plan to organize in the coming months.

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Frank Vega, deputy chief and commanding officer of Patrol Borough Staten Island, chats with McMahon during the event. (Courtesy of Richmond County DA)

For the different firearms, different incentives were given to those who returned them.

Each person who returned a handgun or assault rifle received a $ 200 prepaid card. On a first come, first served basis, these individuals also received an iPad while they were available.

For rifles, shotguns and air guns, participants received a $ 25 prepaid card.

“It’s almost like throwing a rock in the sea, but every gun that’s in our hand is a gun that isn’t in the hands of a criminal,” Brown said. “We know this is a successful initiative today and we will continue to go for it.”


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