The Peekskill Police Department will be hosting an anonymous gun buyback event Saturday, September 15 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the United Methodist Church at 1040 Main Street.
No questions will be asked about any of the weapons that are turned in and cash payouts will be given. Payments are capped at $450 per person.
“Keeping Peekskill one of the safest cities in New York is our top priority,” said Peekskill Police Chief Don Halmy. “We must continue to engage our community by raising their awareness to the tragic effects of gun violence and use their assistance in getting guns off our streets and out of homes where they are unwanted and easily accessible.”
Five years ago when a similar event took place, 75 guns were turned in. Halmy said Deputy Mayor Kathleen Talbot expressed interest in reviving the program and they worked closely together to bring it back.
In June, a PBA fundraiser, hosted by Louie Lanza and John Sharpe at the River Outpost Brewery, raised $12,000 that was designated for the gun buyback/amnesty program. Halmy said additional funds are available from asset forfeiture.
“The overwhelming sentiment of those attending was the same, the epidemic of gun violence in America has gotten out of control and it is up to everyone to do their part to help change this,” Halmy stated. “Every gun that is taken out of circulation, whether it is an illegal handgun on the street, or a shotgun or pistol that has been living in someone’s closet, is one less weapon that can cause extensive damage.”
According to Gun Violence Archive, so far in 2018, firearms have caused the death of almost 10,000 Americans.
“Not only do we want to minimize the risk of unsecured weapons being used for criminal activities, it is imperative that we also eliminate their accessibility to the mentally unstable and our children,” Halmy said.
Cash payouts will be $250 for assault rifles, $200 for handguns, and $100 for rifles and shotguns. Active/retired law enforcement are not eligible. Police ask that all weapons be unloaded and that they be carried in some type of case or holster if possible.