Guns

LA Gives Out Gift Cards As Part Of Annual Gun Buyback Program

The city of Los Angeles collected guns Saturday as part of its annual no questions asked Gun Buyback Program.

They also collected a piece of weaponry that had even seasoned officers scratching their heads.

The event was held until 1 p.m. at two separate locations in Los Angeles. People could sell their guns to the city anonymously.

Sellers qualified to receive a $100 Target gift card for surrendering handguns, shotguns and rifles. Those selling assault rifles qualified for a $200 gift card.

According to the city, the firearms had be unloaded in a locked container, or stored in their vehicle’s trunk.

The two buyback locations were the Los Angeles Sports Arena, located at 3939 S. Figueroa St. in South Los Angeles, and the Facey Medical Group, located at 1165 Sepulveda Blvd. in Mission Hills.

Mayor Eric Garcetti joined Los Angeles police officials at the buyback event taking place at the L.A. Sports Arena.

CBS 2’s Joy Benedict spoke to mane people returning firearms, including people who drove an hour.

Steve Fish and his wife drove to Exposition Park from Orange County to unload two rifles — they said they had four very important reasons to unload the guns.  Their grandchildren.

“They’re over all the time,” Fish said.

He’s glad the guns won’t get into the wrong hands out side his home either.

“The thought that our rifles end up being used in a crime or hurting someone? That’s not a good thing.”

Some of the people returning weapons have been victims of gun violence.

“My house was broken into three times and they robbed me at a liquor store we owned,” said Dorothy Whitfield.

In years past, authorities said they are aren’t really surprised about what people will turn in — ammo, assault weapons, even an Uzi.

“Every year, somebody opens up their trunk and our people say, ‘Haven’t seen one of those before.’” says LAPD Sgt. Jack Richter.

This year, it was a military-grade rocket launcher.

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