Local organization hosts gun buyback event as gun violence continues to plague Hampton Roads

Posted at 8:21 PM, Dec 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-12 20:24:05-05

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - A local organization is helping take unwanted guns off the street.

Hampton Roads Black Caucus is hosting their first annual gun buyback event where unwanted guns can be turned in for a gift card, no questions asked.

News 3 has continued to cover the gun violence that plagues the Hampton Roads area. In July, News 3 took a deeper look into what is being done about the uptick in violence. We requested the homicide rates from the Medical Examiner's Office for Hampton Roads back in July. There was an overall increase from 160 in 2019 to 193 in 2020. The City of Hampton saw an increase of 14 to 24.

Related: Activist, community leaders implement programs to curb gun violence in Hampton Roads

Gun violence has not only affected our local areas but also nationally.

In response to the crisis, HRBC is hosting a community gun buyback event on Saturday, December 18 from noon to 3 p.m., at the Mount Church parking lot located at 620 Baker Road.

"Our aim is to provide the proper and safe disposal of firearms of all kinds. We are very much aware that gun buyback programs are not the ultimate answer to gun crime, but we hope it can be a start in getting “unwanted” guns off our streets and ensuring a safer community," the organization says.

The City of Virginia Beach City Council approved the event on December 7.

HRBC asks residents for their support by donating gift cards or certificates to the event. They say with residents' monetary support, they will be able to offer Visa Gift cards ranging from $25 to $250 in compensation for turning in firearms.

Related: What is straw purchasing firearms? Here's what authorities, gun shop owners are seeing locally