Gun buyback program scheduled for August in Roanoke

Roanoke Valley News

ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — The Roanoke City Council is expected to sign off next week on a gun buyback program, which will be paid for by the Virginia Harm Reduction Coalition.

Firearms that are surrendered will be run through a Virginia State Police database to see if the gun is part of an active criminal investigation. If it’s not, the gun will be destroyed.

The tentative gun buyback program is called “Groceries Not Guns” and will take place from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Aug. 21 at 401 Gainsboro Road NW.

However, officials say those surrendering a rifle need to be at least 18-years-old, those surrendering a handgun need to be at least 21-years-old. In addition, the firearm is not allowed to be a machine gun, a sawed-off shotgun or sawed-off rifle, or a firearm the transfer of which is prohibited under federal law.

According to the event proposal outline on the Roanoke City Council Agenda, guns will be exchanged for grocery gift cards, with more dangerous guns exchanged for higher value gift cards. For example, higher-caliber, semi-automatic handguns will be exchanged for $250 grocery gift cards; shotguns and revolvers will be exchanged for $150 grocery gift cards; and nonfunctional firearms will be exchanged for $50.

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