More than 1,100 firearms were returned province-wide to the RCMP as part of the October gun amnesty, 11 of those right here in Williams Lake.
Police and officials announced at a news conference at the B.C. RCMP headquarters in Surrey last week 1,184 firearms, including replicas, were turned in last month, following 690 requests to remove firearms and ammunition.
John Pilszek of the Williams Lake RCMP said residents in our area took advantage of the amnesty to turn in four shotguns, five rifles, one pellet gun and one handgun.
“In most cases, people (who participate in the amnesty) just want to dispose of a firearm they are no longer interested in keeping. It could just be collecting dust,” said Pilszek.
This is the third gun amnesty the province has held in the past decade. The previous two were in 2006 and 2013 and yielded more than 5,000 firearms in B.C., with the goal of reducing the number of illegally held and unwanted weapons in B.C.
“People found themselves in possession of something that is no longer lawful — perhaps grandparents brought something back from a different time — and took advantage of this opportunity to remove that potential risk,” said B.C. Association of Chiefs of Police Chief Const. Les Sylvan.
Pilszek said the amnesty operated on a ‘no questions asked’ basis unless the guns were involved in criminal proceedings.
“We don’t ask a lot of questions,” he said, noting usually the firearms are disposed of by crushing.