New York City Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly and Richmond County District Attorney Daniel M. Donovan, Jr. today announced the results of Staten Island's first gun buy-back program, held last Saturday, December 13, 2008 at St. Philip's Baptist Church and Brighton Heights Reform Church. As part of the program, 352 guns were recovered, including 82 revolvers, 62 semi-automatic pistols, and an AK-47 assault weapon.
District Attorney Donovan stated, “I am pleased to announce that the first ever gun buy-back program held on Staten Island was an unqualified success with hundreds of guns, including automatic and semi-automatic weapons, being taken off of our streets. I must express my gratitude to Commissioner Kelly, the NYPD and our partner churches for their role in this successful effort.”
Commissioner Kelly said, “If not peace on earth, you have helped bring peace on Staten Island - while our Brooklyn and Manhattan initiatives yielded more guns, per capita Staten Island appears to have collected the most - 352 weapons in just six hours. Thank you, and congratulations. ”
Commissioner Kelly reminded the public that a citywide “cash for guns program provides $100 to anyone who turns in a gun, no questions asked, at police station houses and police facilities in the transit system and housing developments in the five boroughs on any day."
As part of the event, people who owned illegal guns were able to trade them for $200 bank cards at two churches in on the North Shore of Staten Island. All transactions were completely anonymous - no questions asked.
Funding for the event was provided jointly, by the Richmond County District Attorney's Office and the NYPD.
PHOTO: (L to R) Members of the NYPD Firearms & Tactics Section, who render the guns safe when they are surrendered, stand with Deacon Antonio Bryan and the Reverend James Seawood, both of Brighton Heights Reformed Church; the Rev. Tony Baker of St. Philip's Baptist Church, Richmond County District Attorney Daniel Donovan and Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly. NYPD Photo Unit.