At the first-ever Gift Cards for guns event, 577 weapons and about 380 pounds of ammunition were surrendered in exchange for $43,380 in gift cards for gas and groceries, Dane County Sheriff Kalvin Barrett said Tuesday.
The four-hour event took place Saturday at Alliant Energy Center. In a press release Tuesday, the Sheriff’s office said 266 cars came through and people surrended 333 long guns, including 11 assault-stye rifles; 95 handguns, including revolvers and semi-automatic pistols; 93 pellet/BB/paintball guns; one Cross Bow pistol, and 55 homemade weapons (3D-printed guns, Slam guns).
The release said serial numbers on all surrendered weapons were checked and none were reported stolen.
“We’re very pleased with the results from this effort to interrupt the access to guns in our community. It’s important to remember that we will never know if we have prevented an injury or death. We can’t measure something that did not happen,” Barrett said in a statement. “But by providing this opportunity for people to safely dispose of their unwanted firearms, we can undoubtedly say that these guns will never be used in a crime, a suicide, a domestic violence incident or an accident.”
Madison Gas and Electric, Tellurian, Robinia Courtyard, Boys and Girls Club of Dane County and the NAACP Dane County Branch 36AB, along with several private citizens donated a total of $8,525 in gift cards toward the program, making over $45,500 available.
In some cases, participants turned in their gun without wanting or receiving a gift card. This resulted in $1400 of gift cards available for others. All of the serial numbers available have been checked for stolen status and none have been reported as stolen.
“We’ve seen all too often that when guns end up in the wrong hands, there can be devastating consequences,” Dane County Executive Joe Parisi said in a statement. “Thanks to the Dane County Sheriff’s Office for coordinating this event and providing an opportunity for those in our community to safely turn in their unwanted firearms.”