Los Angeles isn’t the only county doing it but they may have started it and are definitely raking in big numbers with it. The program is called “Gifts for Guns” and is sponsored by the county’s Sherriff’s Department. This past year the program collected over 5,000 weapons according to the LA Times.
In exchange for the 5,337 weapons, the Department handed out $428,100 in gift cards to local retailers including Target, Food 4 Less, and Ralph’s.
The program works like this: you bring in a weapon, you get paid. No questions asked.
The Department hopes the program is taking weapons out of the hands of potential criminals and saving lives as well. It has its critics as some argue the guns being turned in aren’t those used by gang bangers and criminals and that those people would simply find more if that were the case.
Someone who has a need for a gun, whether as protection or involvement in criminal activity likely won’t be handing that gun over for grocery coupons, unless they have another to replace it.
The Sherriff’s Department, however, believes that every gun turned in is a potential weapon off the street. The LA Times quotes Lieutenant Anthony Lucia as saying “I tell the deputies if it is a gun that could harm one of our deputies then it is a gun we want of the streets.”
Weapons offenses in L.A. County are more common than people tend to think. With so many laws governing the use of weapons, there are many opportunities to run afoul.
The most common California gun law violation is possession of a firearm without a permit. This is a misdemeanor charge and could land you up to 1 year in jail. There are many more felony gun charges as well, upping the chance that you will spend years behind bars.
Being caught on the wrong side of the law isn’t easy. If you are facing a court date for a weapons charge, I know how stressed you must feel. Trying to understand the charges against you can cause even more stress and worry.
Contact our attorneys today if you are up against charges like these in the state of California. We can help you make sense of the system and be a tireless advocate for your interests in court.