Police gather dozens of undesirable weapons at ‘give-back’ occasions – Press Herald

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Police departments throughout southern Maine collected dozens of undesirable firearms Saturday as a part of a coordinated “gun give-back” program.

The occasion was organized by the Maine Gun Security Coalition together with police departments in Portland, South Portland, Gorham, Scarborough, Cape Elizabeth, Wells, Falmouth, Yarmouth and Brunswick.

Patrolman Les Smith organizes weapons that have been dropped off on the Portland Police Division as a part of a “give-back” occasion Saturday. Firearms turned over to police departments in 9 communities throughout southern Maine might be donated to a nonprofit that turns supplies from the weapons into gardening instruments. Shawn Patrick Ouellette/Employees Photographer

Firearms turned in to the 9 departments might be disabled and donated to a Colorado-based group, RAWtools, that makes use of supplies from weapons to make handheld backyard instruments. These instruments will then be returned to the state and distributed to Portland-area faculties with gardening packages.

In Brunswick, Police Chief Richard Rizzo and his officers had collected 34 rifles, 14 revolvers and 6 semi-automatic handguns as of 1 p.m., an hour earlier than the give-back occasion was resulting from finish.

Most of the folks mentioned their weapons have been owned by a now-deceased member of the family or have been merely now not used of their family, Rizzo mentioned. The occasion additionally drew gun homeowners from Wiscasset and different cities as a result of Brunswick was the northernmost group taking part in this system.

“So far as we’re involved, it’s been successful in Brunswick,” Rizzo mentioned.

The Portland Police Division had obtained 9 firearms by the point the occasion ended at 2 p.m., whereas close by Falmouth obtained greater than a dozen in addition to a big field of unused ammunition.

“It went very nicely,” mentioned Falmouth Police Chief John Kilbride. “We handed gun locks out and have been in a position to discuss to folks about gun security.”

Many police departments all through Maine will settle for undesirable weapons or ammunition at any time as a public service to the group. The weapons and ammunition are sometimes destroyed by police.

However the Maine Gun Security Coalition – a company energetic on each security schooling and firearm-related coverage points – organized Saturday’s “Weapons to Backyard Instruments” program as a “spring cleansing” occasion timed to coincide with Mom’s Day on Sunday.

Gun homeowners have been in a position to drop off the firearms anonymously. And whereas police will run a firearm’s serial numbers – if out there – by databases to find out if it was reported stolen or utilized in a criminal offense, donors weren’t obligated to fill out any paperwork or reply questions concerning the firearms.

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