Santa Fe mayor announces gun buyback

SANTA FE (KRQE) — Cities and towns across the U.S. have held gun buyback events in the few weeks since a mass shooting at a Connecticut e lementary school.

Now Santa Fe Mayor David Coss says it's time for New Mexico towns to organize buybacks, too.

The Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting hit close to home for Coss.

"My daughter is a teacher, and my granddaughter is 7 years old," Coss said. "You just get to a point where you know, it's time for us to change."

Coss says he's now re-evaluating the role guns play in crimes in Santa Fe.

"This year we've had three or four gun murders," Coss said. "Since I've been mayor, we've had so many domestic-violence cases.

"The ready availability of a gun makes a heated argument into a murder."

Coss has announced a buyback program so that people who don't have a use for their guns can keep them off the streets of Santa Fe and out of the hands of criminals.

Similar events have been held around the country. If you turn a gun in, you get anywhere from $100-$200, depending on the type of firearm, in cash or gift cards.

The line of cars at a buyback event Wednesday in Los Angeles stretched for blocks as people turned in guns.

Coss is hoping Santa Fe's first buyback happens the second or third Saturday of January, but the details are still being hammered out with the city and police department.

"Should there just be no questions asked? I know they do that in some cities when you get guns," Coss said. "Should the police department be checking them making sure the guns turned in haven't been used in a crime?"

Coss has also called upon Gov. Susana Martinez to allocate funds to help Santa Fe and other municipalities launch and sustain gun buyback programs. The governor did not want to comment on Coss' proposal.

Coss says he'd like to create a program that lasts beyond January. The Santa Fe city attorney's office says any program costing more than $50,000 would have to be approved by the City Council.

Santa Fe's mayor and two city councilors are also sponsoring a resolution to lobby legislators for tighter gun control.

Meanwhile the city of Albuquerque on Friday announced a drop-off program to dispose of unwanted firearms and ammunition.

No pa yments are off ered, but guns will be accepted no questions asked.

D rop -offs will be accepted every Saturday in January from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Albuquerque Police Depart ment crime lab, 5350 Second Street NW.

Copyright 2014 KRQE TV. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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New Mexico (change)

New Mexico is located in the southwestern region of the U.S. Inhabited by Native American populations for many centuries, New Mexico has also been part of Imperial Spain, part of Mexico, and a U.S. territory.
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Governor: Susana Martinez
Lieutenant Governor: John Sanchez
Attorney General: Gary King
Secretary of State: Dianna J. Durán

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