Police in B.C. will begin collecting unauthorized and unwanted guns in October, as part of a month-long firearms amnesty program they say will help remove guns from communities and reduce the risk they could fall into the hands of criminals.
The amnesty runs from Oct. 1 to 31.
The month-long amnesty will apply to any documented or undocumented firearms and other weapons – including restricted and prohibited ones – that have not been used for a criminal purpose, as well as to any amount of ammunition.
“B.C. police leaders fully support the upcoming firearms amnesty as an important public-safety measure,” said Chief Const. Les Sylven, president, B.C. Association of Chiefs of Police.
“Unfortunately, even legitimate, registered firearms that are properly stored can be stolen and become a danger on our streets so we encourage anyone who has weapons they simply don’t need or want, to participate in the upcoming amnesty in October.”
Firearms and ammunition surrendered during the amnesty will be destroyed. Police also anticipate receiving tips related to other unwanted and unauthorized firearms.
In the past decade, two previous B.C. firearms amnesties in 2006 and 2013 have yielded more than 5,000 firearms – including 900 handguns and two machine guns – plus approximately 127,500 rounds of ammunition. Among hundreds of other weapons surrendered were a rocket launcher, a military missile, historical rifles and antique bayonets.