Local police departments collecting unwanted guns
The Abington, Upper Dublin and Upper Moreland police departments are coordinating to hold a gun buyback Sept. 29 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the New Bethel AME Church, 1646 Prospect Ave., Willow Grove (three blocks off Easton Road at Hamilton Avenue).
The event to promote nonviolence is sponsored by Giant Food Stores.
All guns will be turned in anonymously. No ID will be requested; no questions will be asked. In exchange for guns turned in, people will receive Giant gift cards in the amount of A75 for handguns and rifles, and A125 for assault rifles, while cards last. Guns must be real guns and not BB, Airsoft, pellet or handmade guns. All guns turned in should be unloaded.
Police will be present to accept the guns and will have a portable unloading barrel to make sure guns being turned in are unloaded and safe. Police will make the sole determination of whether a gun qualifies for the rebate and for which amount. Every gun collected will be destroyed.
In addition, all news media will be prohibited from the site to avoid deterring people who do not want to be identified. After the event, the media will be invited to take pictures of the collected guns and allowed to talk to the community leaders who organized the buy-back.
Further, if anyone in the community wants to turn in a gun but is afraid to bring it in safely, that person may call New Bethel AME Church at 215-659-5184 and an unmarked car will be sent to pick it up.
This buy-back grew out of Bridging Our Communities, a grassroots group that formed over concerns for safety in the community following a fatal shooting incident that took place in July in the North Hills section of Abington Township.
Community leaders in the Crestmont and North Hills sections of the township, as well as local police and commissioners from both Abington and Upper Dublin met to discuss promoting nonviolence through peaceful conflict resolution.
“Early on, the community members present felt that a gun buy-back initiative would be a proactive and symbolic first step in promoting nonviolence,” said Abington police Officer Roger Gillispie. “As a result, Abington Deputy Chief John Livingood approached Giant Food Stores who agreed to sponsor this effort by providing gift cards.”
“We hope to use this event to promote a safer community, both in Abington as well as in our adjoining townships,” said Livinggood
For more information, call Officer Gillispie at 215-536-1077.