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CRPD Looking for Help to Start Gun Take-Back Program

CEDAR RAPIDS, IA (CBS2/FOX28) - Chief Wayne Jerman says it's a part of his ongoing mission in Cedar Rapids.


"Take guns out of the community - guns that could possibly be used in gun violence," Jerman said.


The question is, how effective will a gun buyback be? The buyback encourages residents to turn in their guns, no questions asked, no ideas required. Other departments, like Waterloo Police have embraced the idea in the past.


"It was a success in Waterloo, and I've talked to some of my colleagues throughout the country who have had similar success," Jerman said.


He says rather than using tax dollars to fund the program here in Cedar Rapids...


"This initiative is being funded strictly through donations," Jerman said.


Letters soliciting those donations went out to businesses, churches, and others in the community Monday.


The money raised in turn would be used to buy gift cards, valued at $100 per gun.


Linda Seger, President of the Northwest Neighbors Neighborhood association, says it will help.


"It certainly can't hurt to get rid of guns that people don't want or can't use," Seger said


She says there will be limitations, however.


"Most of them are stolen, and very few people are going to carry a stolen gun into the police department for a gift card," Seger said.


Justin Wasson with the Wellington heights neighborhood association says there are some doubts.


"If someone is going to use a gun for a bad reason, why would they give it up," Wasson said.


Overall, he's staying positive.


"I'm always optimistic, trying to look at the brighter side of it," Wasson said. "Hopefully we do see a difference in the shooting numbers with this program."


The Police Department says Monday, the first day they began accepting donations, they received five donations totaling $500.


Chief Jerman says he hopes to get the buyback going in about a month.

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