Police Take Weapons Off the Street With Gun Buy-Back

By  //  August 22, 2013

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forfeiture funds supports effort

ABOVE VIDEO: Barbara Matthews of the Cocoa Police talks about the annual “Kicks for Guns” campaign which was held in Titusville, Cocoa and Palm Bay today.

UPDATE: Gun data was reported from the Public Information Officer Yvonne Martinez.

  • Cocoa collected 103 guns including three illegal guns and one stolen.
  • Palm Bay collected  89 guns including seven illegal guns.
  • Titusville collected 98 guns including 5 illegal guns and one stolen.

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – The Palm Bay Police Department, Cocoa Police Department and the Titusville Police Department hosted the annual “Kicks for Guns” campaign today from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m.  

“Kicks for Guns” is a completely anonymous program that allows area residents to trade in unloaded firearms in exchange for a $50 fuel or food gift card with no questions asked.  In Palm Bay, the event will be located at Space Coast Harley, 1440 Sportsman Lane.

The Palm Bay Police Department, Cocoa Police Department and the Titusville Police Department will host the annual “Kicks for Guns" campaign on Thursday, Aug. 22 from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m.

The Palm Bay Police Department, Cocoa Police Department and the Titusville Police Department hosted the annual “Kicks for Guns” campaign.

Pellet guns and air guns earn a restaurant coupon and there is a maximum of three gift cards per vehicle while supplies last.

“The idea is to remove unwanted guns from the community that can potentially become the target of thieves, said Sgt. Ron Lugo of the Palm Bay Police Department.

“If we can prevent gun crimes from occurring by removing targets of opportunity, that’s a win for everyone.”

Last year Palm Bay officers collected 133 firearms including mostly shotguns, rifles, semi-automatic handguns and revolvers.  Ten of those firearms were illegal to possess. In Cocoa, the buyback is being be held in the east side of the parking lot at Byrd Plaza located at 801 Dixon Boulevard, Cocoa.

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ABOVE MAP: In Cocoa, the buyback was held in the east side of the parking lot at Byrd Plaza located at 801 Dixon Boulevard, Cocoa.

Citizens will receive a $50 gift card (maximum 2 per car) while supplies last.  Person turning in “BB” and/or pellet guns will receive restaurant coupons.

Citizens will receive a $50 gift card (maximum 2 per car) while supplies last. Person turning in “BB” and/or pellet guns will receive restaurant coupons. Last year Cocoa recovered more than 230 guns, all have since been destroyed. The gift cards were purchased using forfeiture funds, which is money seized from criminals as a result of their suspected illegal activities.

Last year Cocoa recovered more than 230 guns, all have since been destroyed. The gift cards were purchased using forfeiture funds, which is money seized from criminals as a result of their suspected illegal activities.

This was the first year the Titusville Police Department participated in the program.  Residents in the city of Titusville turned in unwanted firearms in the Sears Town Mall Parking lot (east side) located at 3550 S. Washington Avenue, Titusville. The Palm Bay Police Department, Cocoa Police Department and Titusville Police Departments are the only law enforcement agencies in Brevard County that participated in this year’s program.

“Kicks for Guns” is in its 13th year. Originally guns were traded in for new shoes at a single location. Due to changing economic conditions the program shifted to gift cards.

UNLOAD AND SECURE WEAPONS

Those turning in firearms were required to make sure the weapons are safely unloaded and properly secured in their vehicle when arriving at the venue entrance. Officers and police department personnel then retrieved all weapons and provided a ticket in order to enter the venue to obtain the gift card.

CRIMELINE-200

The event is sponsored as a partnership among the Palm Bay Police Department, the Cocoa Police Department, the Titusville Police Department, the Central Florida CRIMELINE, KISS 95.1 FM Clear Channel Radio,  Real Radio 104.1, Monsters of the Morning, 102 Jamz, Papa John’s Pizza, Chick fil-A, Burger King and McDonald’s.

For more information contact the Palm Bay Police Public Information Office at 321-426-5194 or the Cocoa Police Public Information Office 321-637-6309.

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ABOVE MAP: This was the first year the Titusville Police Department participated in the program.  Residents in the city of Titusville turned in unwanted firearms in the Sears Town Mall Parking lot (east side) located at 3550 S. Washington Avenue, Titusville.


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