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Firearms buyback in Syracuse sets record

  • Updated
Gun buyback in Syracuse

This image provided by the state attorney general's office shows firearms collected during a buyback event in Syracuse.

The gun buyback event held Saturday in Syracuse collected 342 firearms, the largest in the history of the program run through the state attorney general's office.

New York AG Letitia James has been holding buyback events in larger cities around the state in recent weeks in response to increased gun violence. Saturday's event, held in partnership with the city of Syracuse, accepted any working and non-working, unloaded firearms with no questions asked. In exchange, participants were paid on-site with the following terms:

• Assault rifle, $250

• Handgun, $150

• Rifle or shotgun, $75

• Non-working or antique gun, $25

Payments came in the form of prepaid gift cards. Those turning in assault rifles and handguns also received an Apple iPad, subject to availability on a first come, first served basis.

“Gun violence continues to claim lives and threaten communities throughout our state,” James said in a press release after Saturday's event. “With the spike in gun violence ravaging neighborhoods in Syracuse, it is more important than ever that we use every tool at our disposal to protect our families and children. Whether it is taking down the violent drug rings fueling this crisis, hosting gun buybacks, or supporting community groups that are addressing this violence — we are vigorously combating this crisis from every angle. Every gun that was turned in today represents a potential tragedy averted and a potential life saved, and we are grateful to our partners for their support.”

Of the 342 firearms collected Saturday, there were 176 handguns, 119 shotguns and rifles, 11 assault rifles and 36 non-working or antique guns.

The OAG's office has been holding buyback events around the state since 2013, with more 4,000 firearms collected.


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