FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, December 15, 2022
Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez and NYPD
To Offer $500 and iPads for Guns, Just in Time for the Holidays
Gun Buyback to Pay Unprecedented Sums for Turned-in Firearms, No Questions Asked;
Will be Held at Cornerstone Baptist Church in Bed-Stuy on Saturday, December 17
Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez, together with New York City Police Commissioner Keechant L. Sewell, today announced that a Gun Buyback event will be held on Saturday, December 17, 2022, from 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. at Cornerstone Baptist Church, 574 Madison Street, in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. Those who turn in operable guns and assault rifles will receive a $500 bank card for each firearm – the highest sum paid in a Gun Buyback event in New York City. In addition, the first 25 attendees will also receive an iPad.
District Attorney Gonzalez said, “Getting guns off the streets is a shared responsibility and Saturday’s Gun Buyback event is part of our Office’s comprehensive strategy to reduce gun violence in our neighborhoods. I encourage anyone who may have a firearm in their home – or knows someone who does – to take advantage of this opportunity and get a substantial sum of money in time for the holidays. I would like to thank the NYPD, business leaders and the community-based organizations who are partnering with us to make this event a success.”
Commissioner Sewell said, “The most effective way to reduce gun violence in our city is to reduce the number of guns on our streets. To that end, the NYPD will continue to deploy every strategy available to keep New Yorkers safe – including Gun Buyback events like this one. I want to thank everyone at the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office for their partnership in this important program, and for their unwavering commitment to public safety.”
Tomas Ramos, Founder and CEO of Oyate Group, said, “Gun violence is detrimental to our physical, mental and overall health and has an outsized impact on New York City’s most under-resourced communities. We at Oyate Group believe in taking an intersectional approach to public safety. Poverty has long been associated with violence, and our aim is to put an end to that violence through a conscious effort to address the struggles New York City’s underserved communities face. We are thankful for our partners who have joined us in promoting peace and investing in the financial stability of our boroughs. Together we can end gun violence.”
Pastor Lawrence E. Aker III of Cornerstone Baptist Church said, “The Cornerstone Church is pleased to collaborate with District Attorney Eric Gonzalez in an effort that will potentially make the streets of Brooklyn safer and bring joy during this holiday season.”
The District Attorney said that, thanks to a generous donation from the Oyate Group – a nonprofit dedicated to alleviating poverty by creating sustainable and holistic solutions that empower underserved communities across the city – his Office will offer money in the form of a $500 bank card for each operable gun or assault rifle turned in (there is no limit on the numbers of guns that can be turned in). No identification is required, and all transactions will be anonymous, no questions asked. Participants can also receive $150 for each operable rifle or shotgun, and $50 for each BB gun or imitation pistol.
The bank cards will be issued after each firearm is received and screened by officers on-site. Guns should be unloaded and packaged in a paper or plastic bag or a box when brought to the event. If transported by car, the guns must be kept in the trunk. Both working and inoperable weapons will be accepted. Active or retired law enforcement officers and licensed gun dealers are not eligible for this event.
Furthermore, the first 25 individuals to turn in a firearm will also receive a free iPad. The devices were donated by T-Mobile and Junior’s Restaurant as part of a private-public partnership to enhance safety.
T-Mobile’s Senior Vice President Terry Hayes said, “T-Mobile is proud to support the Police Athletic League, the NYPD and the Brooklyn DA’s Office by donating iPads for the upcoming Gun Buyback event. As an employer in Brooklyn, with Metro by T-Mobile and T-Mobile stores, we think of this as our commitment to keeping both our employees and residents safe.”
Junior’s third-generation owner Alan Rosen said, “As a father, businessman, and owner of restaurants that have been woven into the very fabric of New York for more than 70 years, I want to do everything I can to keep my borough, my city, my restaurants, and my fellow New Yorkers safe. If this gun buyback just saves the life of one other innocent boy or girl, it is worth it. Of course, we’re hoping that hundreds of individuals will participate by turning in their guns so we can really make a major dent in the problem.”
The Gun Buyback is the third such event hosted by the Brooklyn DA’s Office this year. A total of 109 firearms were turned over in the previous two events, including many types of firearms that are often used in street crimes.
Cornerstone Baptist Church is located at 574 Madison Street, about 10 blocks from the A/C subway station on Utica Avenue, and a similar distance from the J/Z Subway Station on Gates Avenue. The bus lines B15, B26 and B52 all have stops in the vicinity.
The District Attorney thanked Oyate Group, the New York City Police Foundation and Junior’s Restaurant for partnering to contribute funds and resources for this event.
[Note: media availability will take place on Saturday, December 17, 2022, at 4 p.m.]