By Bob Allen

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WILKINSBURG (KDKA) — Wilkinsburg Police purchased more than 100 weapons from residents within two hours during its annual gun buyback program Saturday.

The department paid out almost $4,000 in Giant Eagle gift certificates, offering $50 for handguns and $25 for rifles.

gun buy back wilkinsburg 1 Wilkinsburg Police Purchase More Than 100 Weapons In 2 Hours During Gun Buyback

(Photo Credit: KDKA Photojournalist Tim Lawson)

In fact, the response was so overwhelming, the department ran out of gift certificates and had to tell residents to bring their guns back on Monday.

Some residents said they didn’t want grandchildren to find the weapons in their homes; others just wanted to be sure the guns didn’t end up on the streets.

Police Chief Ophelia “Cookie” Coleman says one less gun on the street is one less incident where someone can get hurt.

The borough took the guns from residents with no questions asked, but there was one incident during the event.

The department is filing charges against a man who was outside trying to get people to sell him their guns instead.

“The person who was out there stated that he was a state constable. Well, you would expect someone with a record to be doing something like that, but never a person that’s supposed to be involved with law enforcement,” Coleman said.

gun buy back wilkinsburg 2 Wilkinsburg Police Purchase More Than 100 Weapons In 2 Hours During Gun Buyback

(Photo Credit: KDKA Photojournalist Tim Lawson)

The buyback program won’t stop some from owning weapons illegally, but it is part of the effort to stop guns from falling into the wrong hands.

Comments (2)
  1. Matthew Alan says:

    You would think someone that was given the job of police chief would at least be marginally familiar with the law. What she cited the constable for does not apply. Unfortunate that Wilkinsburg will have to put out money to defend against a false arrest. Shame you hired a dullard to run the show.

  2. Gun buy back programs make me feel better about living in Wilkinsburg. Thank you to those who organized this life-saving event. My bedroom window was shot out by a random bullet fired on my street last year.

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