Guns for groceries program begins in Bristol

May 14, 2009 3:17:37 PM PDT
45 guns were traded for giftcards in a 4 hour span. There were no questions asked as people brought weapons to Bristol's town hall kicking off the township's groceries for guns buyback program that began Thursday morning.

"It keeps some of the guns off the street, rather than being out on the street where people can use them for different crimes," Officer Mark Buzby of the Bristol Township Police said.

People turned in revolvers, automatic and semi-automatic guns, shotguns, even vintage weapons like a WWII era German reuger.

In exchange for the guns, people got Pathmark grocery gift cards, $50 for revolvers, $75 for rifles and shotguns and $100 for automatic weapons.

86-year-old Phil Koons got $150 in grocery cards for two .38 specials he purchased years ago to protect the tire business he retired from in 1999.

"I don't want it to get into the wrong hands, that's the main thing; as long as I know it's in the bucket, I know it's safe," Koons said.

The guns are secured; they'll be traced for crimes and destroyed.

Philadelphia Park provided a $20,000 grant for this program.

Bristol will continue the program every Tuesday and Thursday until the end of year or until the grant runs out.

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