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Schneiderman sponsors gun buyback in Niagara Falls as part of statewide program

by jmaloni

Submitted

Tue, Jun 3rd 2014 02:10 pm

A.G.'s office will offer cash for working and non-working firearms at former City of Niagara Falls Fire Department headquarters

Schneiderman: Gun buybacks help keep unwanted firearms out of the wrong hands

Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman today announced his office will sponsor a gun buyback in Niagara Falls on Saturday, June 7, as part of his statewide gun-buyback program. The attorney general's office will accept working and non-working, unloaded firearms in exchange for compensation on site. The event is a collaborative effort between the attorney general's office and the City of Niagara Falls Police Department. 

"By providing a financial incentive for individuals to turn in unwanted weapons, we are helping to prevent potentially deadly firearms from ending up in the wrong hands," Schneiderman said. "My office's gun-buyback program is a critical component of our ongoing efforts to eradicate the devastating gun violence that has plagued our neighborhoods for far too long, and give New Yorkers across the state the peace of mind they deserve." 

This Saturday's gun buyback will take place at the former City of Niagara Falls Fire Department headquarters, located at 520 Hyde Park Blvd. It runs from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The attorney general's office will offer money in the form of debit cards when a firearm is received by law enforcement officers. Debit cards with the appropriate amount will be issued after each unloaded firearm is received and screened by the officers on site. 

"After a very successful gun buyback last year, where we were able to get more than 100 guns off the street, we decided to partner with Attorney General Eric Schneiderman's office to host this year's event," said Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster. "Like last year, we're confident that we'll see a variety of guns coming through the doors. Some will be pretty scary, and it will be good to get them off the streets. Others will be brought in by everyday citizens who ended up with them after a relative died. They may not want the gun, because they are afraid someone could break in and steal it, and the buyback provides a safe outlet to discard it."

Guns must be transported to the drop-off site in the trunk of a car, unloaded and in a plastic or paper bag or box. Both working and non-working firearms will be accepted. There is no limit on the number of firearms an individual can return. Licensed gun dealers and active or retired law enforcement officers are not eligible for this program. Money for the program comes not from tax dollars, but from funds recovered through forfeitures and other prosecutions.

The attorney general's office will provide the following compensation by debit card for firearms returned on site:

  • $25 for antique or non-working firearms; 
  • $50 for rifles and shotguns; 
  • $75 for handguns; and
  • $100 for assault weapons.

On Saturday, June 28, a gun buyback will take place in Binghamton. 

A gun buyback in Utica last October resulted in the turn-in of 201 firearms. Of those weapons, more than half were pistols, and three were assault weapons. A September gun buyback in Rochester yielded a total of 243 guns turned in. They included three non-working guns, 89 rifles and shotguns, 150 handguns and one assault weapon. The vast majority of the guns turned in were not properly permitted.

A third gun buyback event, held last Saturday in White Plains, resulted in 54 handguns and 40 rifles and shotguns - a total of 94 firearms - being turned in.

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