Newark gun buyback event nets 332 firearms, pays out $41K

Posted: Updated:
NEWARK -

A gun buyback event in Essex County brought in more than 300 weapons last weekend, from handguns that fit comfortably in a palm to assault rifles with high-tech accessories.

The Essex County Prosecutor's Office displayed some of the weapons Wednesday. They said the event held Saturday yielded 332 firearms and paid out about $41,000.

“The 332 weapons were taken off the street, saving countless lives,” said acting Essex County Prosecutor Theodore Stephens. “It's anonymous and that's what makes the program successful. People feel secure knowing they can bring the gun in with no questions asked at all and because our goal is just to get it off the street."

Most of the money was raised by the Essex County Bar Foundation. It's one of the first privately funded gun buyback events in New Jersey.

The maximum payout per gun was $250. The weapons will be melted down and recycled.

Stephens called the event "a tremendous success."

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.

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