In an effort to make the streets of Queens safer for all residents, the NYPD has come together with local officials to offer gun owners the chance to get rid of their weapons and get back some money — no questions asked.
Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown and Councilman Donovan Richards are teaming up with the NYPD on Saturday to host a gun buy-back program at the Macedonia Baptist Church, located at 330 Beach 67th St. in Arverne.
During the event — which will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. — people who own either legal or illegal guns will be able trade the firearms for an American Express gift card valued at up to $200.
With the gun buy-back program, officials aim to get the unwanted guns off the streets of Queens and in return ensure safety to all residents.
“The more guns taken off the streets of Queens, the fewer shootings and the fewer deaths. That is the goal of Saturday’s gun buy-back program - to keep the men, women and children of Queens County safe from gun violence,” Brown said. “Getting guns off the streets of Queens and reducing gun violence has always been a top priority of my office.”
All transactions that are made on Saturday will be anonymous — no questions asked — and there is no limit to how many weapons can be surrendered. However, there is a limit of three pre-paid gift cards per person.
Authorities will accept only working handguns and assault rifles for the gift card of the maximum value of $200 and operable air guns, rifles and shotguns can be swapped for a $25 American Express gift card. No active or retire law enforcement weapons will be accepted.
Individuals who plan to bring in their guns on Saturday are encouraged to bring the unloaded firearms in a paper or plastic bag or inside a shoe box. Whoever decided to drive to the Queens church must store their weapon in the trunk of their vehicle.
“To really make our streets safer and make Far Rockaway the neighborhood our residents deserve, we need to partner with the entire community to rid the peninsula of gun violence,” Councilman Donovan Richards said.
Saturday’s event is the second Queens gun buy-back program this year with the previous event in April bringing in over 80 firearms.
Other than this weekend, the NYPD continuously operates a cash for guns program where individuals can anonymously bring in their handgun, sawed-off shotgun or assault weapon — all in apparent working condition — to any precinct, transit district or police service area and get $100.