Another Gun Buyback in the Works
Lansing's gun buyback program, Guns for Groceries, was a success on Saturday. Depending on how you look at it, it may have been too successful. Video by fox47news.comvideo
There were too many guns and too few groceries at Saturday's gun buyback in Lansing.
"We had to turn people away because the turnout was so excellent," said Lansing Police Chief Teresa Szymanski. "I was actually telling people that we were closed, and that we had ran out of funds."
Guns for Groceries closed about an hour early. Police came equipped with 75 $100 Meijer gift cards, but those ran out. An officer bought 20 more, and they still handed out I.O.U.s at the end.
"The right thing to do was make sure they got their credit for it, and straighten up the bill later, which we have done."
Those people got their gift cards Monday morning. Now Lansing police have 99 guns, and not $1 left.
"We're going to start raising money today for that," said Mayor Virg Bernero. "We spent every dollar that we had raised, all of $10,000."
That money was split among 59 long guns, like rifles, and 40 handguns. The mayor said we can expect another buyback, but with a slightly different focus.
"Handguns are the bigger problem out there, although either one could be a problem accidentally in terms of accidental discharge if it's not stored safely," Bernero said. "So, no decisions have been made, but we've talked about targeting handguns, and we've talked about more outreach in the community."
Bernero hopes to get a discussion going at home.
"Having parents be more engaged with their young people about 'Do you have a gun?', and here's a chance for you to get rid of it," Bernero said.
Szymanski said she plans to have a round table with the mayor's office to get another gun buyback set up.
All of the guns collected will be destroyed.