Hundreds of people turned up at a gun buyback event in Baltimore, Md. over the weekend, with many saying they were spurred to turn in their weapons by Friday's tragic school shooting in Newtown, Conn.
Baltimore police took in 461 guns on Saturday, according to the Baltimore Sun
, which noted that in return for giving up their weapons, people were offered a $100 gift card to a local supermarket. While some acknowledged the money was important to help buy food for themselves or others during the holidays, many said they were motivated to trade in their guns primarily because of the violence that claimed the lives of so many children Friday morning.
"After the incident yesterday, it was time to get it out of the house," Sonia White, a 65-year-old grandmother who showed up with a revolver, told the Sun.
She said she cried when she picked up her own grandchildren from school on Friday because she realized the mass shooting that killed 26 kids and teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown could have happened anywhere.
"That really motivated me to come out," Gary Barksdale, 30, also told the newspaper. He joined his father in turning in two rifles, which they said could have been used to hurt their own children or grandchildren.
Howard Klein, vice president of ShopRite supermarkets, which organized the event with police, said the shooting in Connecticut served as "a poignant reminder of what can happen when you have guns in the home and what we don't want to happen in our communities."
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