SDSO Hosts ‘Guns for Gift Cards' Event in Chula Vista, Up to 300 Firearms Returned

The event took place at the South Bay Courthouse parking lot at 500 Third Ave. The next event will be held on Nov. 13 at the La Mesa Civic Center

NBC Universal, Inc.

The San Diego County Sheriff's Department, along with other police departments in the county, hosted a Guns for Gift Cards event in Chula Vista hoping people can turn in their unwanted guns.

The event took place at the South Bay Courthouse parking lot at 500 Third Ave.

Those who turn in their handguns were able to get $100 for handguns, rifles, and shotguns and a $200 gift card for any assault weapons.

San Diego Police collected more than 400 firearms Saturday during a "no questions asked" gift card exchange event in Kearny Mesa. NBC 7's Ramon Galindo reports.

Ana Chamberlin, a Del Mar resident, stopped by the event to drop off her grandfather's WWII rifles that she had been hanging on to.

"I just couldn't carry them around anymore," Chamberlin said. "It kind of choked me up a little bit because they're sentimental, but it's the right thing to do."

All firearms turned in must be in working order, must be placed unloaded in the trunk. No questions asked. A deputy at the scene will be able to provide further instructions.

All weapons collected will be destroyed.

Officials said a total of 301 unwanted firearms were turned in. Last month, SDSO collected more than 418 firearms when they hosted a prior event in Kearny Mesa.

The exchange comes as officers across the county deal with a rise in gun crimes.

“It's perhaps a gun we’re not going to encounter," said San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit. "The number of guns we’re seizing from the community right now: Over 1,600 firearms, over 355 ghost guns now. The number of firearms from prohibited persons is alarming right now."

“Our shootings are up 63 percent right now," Chief Nisleit added. "Our homicides are up. Gang homicides are up over 100 percent. We are seeing a lot of gun violence right now."

Contact Us