(CFNews13) – A huge effort to collect unwanted and dangerous guns kicks off Friday morning across Central Florida.
The Kicks 4 Guns event allows anyone to turn in any firearm, no questions asked, in exchange to shoes or a gift certificate.
If you have a gun to turn in, make sure it is not loaded, and bring it in a bag. No one will ask for your name or any other information.
Nine locations across Central Florida are participating in Kicks 4 Guns, spanning Brevard, Lake, Orange, Osceola and Volusia counties.
Organizers said most of the guns turned in during last year’s Kicks 4 Guns event were from people who just didn’t want them anymore.
Some interesting weapons have turned up at previous events, including sawed off shotguns — which are illegal — some antique guns, and even a Georgia police officer’s gun a few years back.
Organizers said having a day with total amnesty makes Central Florida safer, because it keeps guns out of kids’ hands.
“You have people committing homicides under the age of 18 with firearms, drive-by shootings,” said Barb Bergin, executive director of CrimeStoppers. “Guns are involved with younger kids, so if a gun doesn’t get taken in, a burglary or a drive-by shooting or a homicide later on, and that’s one of the biggest things we can accomplish.”
Kicks 4 Guns was started over 12 years ago by The Monsters on Real Radio 104.1. Host Russ Rollins said the goal is to go statewide.
“We’re going at a pretty good pace, but I think one day, there should be a day when everybody talks about it,” he said. “We turn in guns, no questions asked, and you get a pair of shoes, no questions asked. So yeah, I think it should even be bigger.”
Law enforcement across Central Florida said it stands behind the event, not only because it gets guns off the streets, but also because it lets kids who come in with their families see police officers and deputies in a different light, and they can work on those positive relationships.