ORLANDO, Fla. - Gun owners can turned over their unloaded weapons across Central Florida on Thursday and received a pair of shoes or gift cards in exchange.
Fourteen Central Florida law enforcement agencies accepted guns, granting amnesty to citizens who want to get rid of them, no questions asked, as part of the 19th annual “Kicks 4 Guns” event.
The idea kicked off 20 years ago when a child was shot and killed for his shoes, and Orlando radio host Russ Rollins thought it would be good to offer new shoes for unwanted guns. That exchange has now changed to gift cards. Since then, more than 10,000 guns have been surrendered.
Gift cards and shoes traded for guns are purchased with money seized by the law enforcement agencies and connected with felony crimes, officials with the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office said.
Gun drop off locations opened at 7 a.m. in Altamonte Springs, Clermont, Daytona Beach, DeLand, Eustis, Kissimmee Orlando, Sanford and Winter Park.
Officers collected rifles, pistols, shotguns, ammo and other weapons at more than a dozen locations across six counties. In exchange, $50 gift cards to Walmart were given. Henry Hartmann, of Orlando, says he brought his guns because they were sitting around the house and not being used. He didn't want them to end up in the wrong hands.
“If something happens with them, somebody breaks in, then we're going to go on a guilt trip, well we should have turned them in, we should have turned them in,” Hartmann said.
Osceola officials said deputies could also pick up guns from anyone who does not have transportation to one of the drop-off locations. Residents in Osceola County can call 407-348-2222 to request a gun pick up.
In Winter Park, an inert grenade was dropped off, prompting police to tweet a photo of the relic.
OPD #Kicks4Guns2017 totals: 20 handguns, 10 rifles, 10 shotguns, 6 pellet guns. That's 46 guns that will never be in hands of criminals pic.twitter.com/96WBsRk8z1 — Orlando Police (@OrlandoPolice) August 17, 2017
#Kicks4Guns So far we have collected 29 guns today, one of which was a stolen firearm from an SPD case earlier this year. #NoQuestionsAsked pic.twitter.com/JKxBkMgPUx — Sanford Police (@SanfordPolice) August 17, 2017
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