State Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa announced a gun-buyback program for Essex County Thursday in Newark.
The program takes places Feb. 15 and 16 at the following churches: St. Paul AME Church in East Orange, Christian Love Baptist Church in Irvington, Union Baptist Church, 12-14 Midland Ave. in Montclair, The Church of the Epiphany in Orange, the Calvary Gospel Church, 17 Lyons Ave. in Newark, and the Paradise Baptist Church in Newark, 348 15th Ave.
The buybacks will take place between 8 am and 8 pm.
According to Chiesa, the Essex County buyback will be conducted in the same manner as state-sponsored buybacks held in Camden in December, and in Trenton last weekend. Essex County residents can turn in up to three firearms of any type, no questions asked, and receive cash payment of up to $250 per weapon.The money comes from criminal forfeiture funds.
Police officers will be stationed at each of the six churches to collect and secure guns.
In the most recent buyback in Trenton, more than 700 guns – nearly a quarter of all the weapons taken in – were illegal to own because they featured unlawfully high ammunition capacities, had sawed-off barrels or were otherwise modified.
During the two-day Camden County gun buyback held last December 14 and 15 in Camden city, more than 1,100 guns were taken in at two church locations. During the two-day Mercer County gun buyback held last January 25 and 26 in Trenton, more than 2,600 guns – including hundreds of sawed-off shotguns and nearly 1,000 handguns – were turned in. In both buybacks, the vast majority of the weapons – more than 90 percent – were operable.
The Essex “Guns for Cash” buyback event is a cooperative effort involving the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, New Jersey State Police, the state Division of Criminal Justice, the Essex County Sheriff’s Office, the faith-based community and the mayors and police executives of the five host municipalities. In addition to publicizing the gun buyback campaign through today’s press conference, the two-day “Guns for Cash” effort will be promoted through local radio, newspaper, bus transit and other advertising in and around Essex County.
Residents with questions about the gun buyback program can call the Attorney General’s Citizen Services unit at (609) 984-5828 or visit www.nj.gov/guns.
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