Manitoba firearm owners encouraged to unload their guns during month-long amnesty

Manitoba's police officers want to take unwanted guns off your hands — no questions asked.

Program starts Friday, is 1st province-wide amnesty since 2010

Manitoba RCMP Assistant Commissioner Scott Kolody announces details about the province's first gun amnesty program since 2010. (Lyza Sale/CBC)

Manitoba's police officers want to take unwanted guns off your hands. 

The province has announced a month-long gun amnesty program, beginning Friday.

Members of the public are asked to call local police through a non-emergency line to make arrangements for an officer to pick up their unwanted firearms and ammunition and dispose of them.

Scott Kolody, Manitoba RCMP assistant commissioner, said during a Friday news conference that every gun collected is a weapon that won't end up in the hands of a criminal.

"This is an excellent opportunity for every Manitoban to go into their basement, go into their garage, their barn, or wherever their guns may be stored and ask themselves one question: am I ever really going to use this gun again?"

If the answer is no, Kolody strongly encourages gun owners to make the call.

Police will not lay charges against someone turning in a weapon, such as possessing an unregistered gun, unless it was used to commit a crime or was stolen, a media release from the province said.

These are some of the 1,700 firearms turned over to Winnipeg police as part of the Pixels for Pistols month-long initiative in 2012. (Winnipeg Police Service)

​More than 600 guns were turned over to police in Manitoba during the last two province-wide collection programs, in 2010 and 2007.

The Winnipeg Police Service ran a similar program in 2012, offering a digital point-and-shoot camera and/or a photography store gift card as a reward for Winnipeg gun owners who turned in firearms.

Police collected 1,700 firearms and 13,000 rounds of ammunition during the month.

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