MARYLAND

Prince George's County police hold 'Gift Cards for Guns' event

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Prince George's County Police collected nearly 200 guns Saturday through its "Gift Cards for Guns" program.

Residents were offered gift cards of $25-100 per gun turned in. They turned over pistols, shotguns, semi-automatics, and others.

Police held the event at First Baptist Church of Highland Park from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

Collecting even one gun, police say, would have been a success, even if it doesn't immediately bring down crime.

"Man, I was heartbroken," recalled Andre Boyd.

Boyd is still grieving nine months after his cousin, Antwan Brooks, was murdered. Brooks' funeral announcements pepper Boyd's dashboard.

"Every time I get in, I see him. He is always in my heart," Boyd said.

Brooks was gunned down in Prince George's County last fall, making him one of more than 60 people killed by gun violence in 2011.

It's a startling statistic that Prince George's County police are hoping to lower with "Gift Cards for Guns".

Major Ray Gordon, with Prince George's County police, said, "We just want people to know that if they are in possession of a gun, we'll take of off your hands. No questions asked."

Gordon added, 'We know that if we get these guns off the street that will eventually bring down crime."

But, the theory offers little comfort to Boyd.

"You can make more than that selling them on the street if this program is just about money," Boyd explained.

Police counter that collecting and destroying guns will stop them from being used in a future crime.

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