EVANSTON (CBS) — The city of Evanston offered residents $100 cash to turn in a gun Saturday.
More than 40 people did so in the first hour, surrendering an array of weapons that ranged from handguns to rifles.
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Police Cmdr. Jay Parrott said it wasn’t the Connecticut school or Oregon mall shootings that were on peoples’ minds.
“Some people just feel they want to just get them out of the house, that they are not properly being kept after and they don’t have a place to secure them properly,” said Parrott.” I talked to one lady who was a security guard, she is no longer anymore, and she wanted to turn in the weapon.
Those who surrendered the gun at Christ Temple Church, 1722 Simpson St., had to pass Joel Siegel, a Niels man who held a hand-lettered sign asking them to think twice before surrendering the gun.
“Many of these maybe valuable artifacts, historical items,family heirlooms that probably should be appraised or go to a museum,” said Siegel.
Parrott said a number of those who surrendered guns did not want them in the hands of anyone except police or a smelter. He said the guns would be destroyed early next year, and would not be reissued to police or resold.
The cash for the buy-back program came from a $10,000 donation from Northwestern University, $1,000 donation from Evanston Hospital and smaller donations from city residents.
Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl was on hand, and said she, police and the city council would assess the success of the program before determining their next move.