Groups prepare for gun buyback event in August

Published: Jul. 23, 2021 at 8:11 PM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - Community leaders in Roanoke say they hope to make history - and make a difference - with a gun buyback program next month.

Representatives of the NAACP, city government and other partners gathered outside the Lawson Building in Gainsboro Friday morning. They plan to hold the ‘Groceries Not Guns’ event there August 21, from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m.

“Gun violence is the number one priority for the police department,” said Roanoke City Chief of Police Sam Roman. “Right now it is a problem, a huge problem.”

“So we are doing an intervention,” said Brenda Hale, President of the Roanoke Branch NAACP. “And an intervention means that this is for the good of all.”

Semi-automatic handguns can be exchanged for $250 in grocery gift cards. Shotguns, rifles and revolvers will be exchanged for gift cards worth $150.

The event is being financed in part by a grant from the Roanoke City Gun Violence Commission.

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