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January 23rd, 2013

Diana announces 2013 gun buyback program

Orange County Executive Edward A. Diana speaks at a press conference announcing the 2013 “Save a Life” Gun Buyback Program, an effort to curb gun violence, which will run through March 18, 2013.

GOSHEN - Orange County Executive Edward A. Diana, together with Orange County District Attorney Francis D. Phillips, Orange County Sheriff Carl E. DuBois, City of Middletown Police Chief Ramon Bethencourt, City of Newburgh Police Chief Michael Ferrara, City of Port Jervis Police Chief William Worden, Police Chiefs’ Association of Orange County President Todd M. Hazard, and ShopRite’s Vice President of Human Resources and Community Affairs Mr. Tom Urtz, have announced that the County would be sponsoring the 2013 "Save a Life" Gun Buyback Program, asking individuals to turn in illegal or unwanted firearms in exchange for ShopRite gift cards with no questions asked.

"Orange County is committed to reducing gun violence and reducing the injuries and deaths associated with unlawful access to firearms," said County Executive Diana. "No one can argue against removing unlawful and unwanted guns to prevent them from getting into the wrong hands. I encourage all of our citizens that may be in possession of an illegal or unwanted gun to do the right thing and take advantage of this program."

"Save a Life," Orange County’s Gun Buyback program runs through March 18, 2013. Individuals may turn in illegal or unwanted firearms in exchange for up to $150 in gift cards, 24 hours a day, no questions asked, at drop-off locations at the Middletown Police Dept. on James Street, the Newburgh Police Dept. on Broadway, and the Port Jervis Police Dept. on Hammond Street, as well as at the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, 110 Wells Farm Road in Goshen.

"Unwanted, unlicensed, or neglected firearms are more likely to find their way into the hands of persons who will facilitate their use in a crime," said Orange County Sheriff DuBois. "Any firearm surrendered will be one less weapon that could possibly be encountered by Police Officers."

The County held previous gun buyback programs, one in 2007 when 198 firearms were turned in and then again in 2010 when 217 guns were collected.

"The health and wellness of our associates, customers and community are a vital part of our core beliefs," said Tom Urtz, Vice President of Human Resources and Community Affairs, ShopRite.

To receive amnesty for possession of a gun, along with a ShopRite gift card, the following procedure must be followed: 1. Contact nearest City Police Department; 2. Gun must be delivered unloaded; 3. Gun must be in a clear plastic bag; 4. Ammunition will be accepted, but no credit given; 5. If transported by car, gun must be transported in the trunk; 6. After gun is screened, a gift card will be given; 7. Rifles and shotguns will be accepted; and, 8. Gun dealers and brokers are not eligible.

For more information, please contact the nearest City Police Department - Middletown (845) 343-3151, Newburgh (845) 569-7532, Port Jervis (845) 856-5101 or the Orange County Sheriff’s Office at (845) 291-7900.

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