The City of Houston, Harris County Precinct One and the Houston Police Department (HPD) announced details of a gun buyback program today during a news conference at Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church. Watch the full news conference here.
The first gun buyback event will allow people to exchange firearms for gift cards on July 30 from 8 a.m. to noon at Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church, 3826 Wheeler Ave.
The gun buyback program is part of the One Safe Houston initiative that Mayor Sylvester Turner launched in February.
“The City is investing $1 million for this program, and we are partnering with Harris County Precinct One Commissioner Rodney Ellis to have the greatest impact and to get unwanted and dangerous guns off the streets,” said Mayor Turner. “This is one tool we are using to combat violent crime; there are too many guns on the streets. I encourage Houstonians to turn in their unwanted guns, which could help save a life and prevent crime. Only together will we be able to combat our current crime challenges and make our streets safer.”
With no questions asked, people who turn in their guns will receive a $50 gift card for every non-functioning gun, $100 for a rifle, $150 for a handgun, and $200 for an assault rifle. All firearms must be unloaded and inside the vehicle’s trunk.
“Harris County and the City of Houston have mobilized our resources with absolute urgency in a full-court press on reducing violence in our communities. We’ve made the largest investment in public safety in the history of Harris County, implemented innovative new programs to get at the root of gun violence, and made investments to speed up our court system and keep the wheels of justice turning,” said Harris County Precinct One Commissioner Rodney Ellis. “Our gun buyback is just another way we are rolling up our sleeves and getting to work to make our community safer. I’m proud to partner with the city on this initiative and look forward to getting some guns off the street on July 30th.”
The Gun Buyback program is voluntary and anonymous. If a surrendered gun has been reported stolen, police will make every effort to return it to the registered owner.
“I thank Mayor Turner for his vision and support. Because of his One Safe Houston initiative and our partnership with Houstonians, we are seeing our year-to-year violent crime numbers decrease,” said Houston Police Chief Troy Finner.
One Safe Houston, the Mayor’s Public Safety Initiative to Combat Violent Crime is a $53.1 million investment funded by the American Rescue Plan and focuses on four key areas:
- Violence Reduction and Crime Prevention
- Crisis Intervention, Response and Recovery
- Youth Outreach Opportunities
- Key Community Partnerships
For more information on the Gun Buyback program, please visit https://www.houstontx.gov/onesafehouston/gun-buyback.html.