It's not necessarily that there are more guns in Rumson than Asbury Park.
The reason why this year's Gun Buyback Program, sponsored by the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office, yielded more weapons in the new Rumson drop-off than Asbury is probably just because an alternate, perhaps more convenient drop-off location was offered this time, Rumson Police Chief Scott Paterson surmised.
During the two-day anonymous guns-for-cash program, with the addition of the Rumson drop-off location a first, a total of 125 guns were brought to the Rumson Police Department and 93 were surrendered at Shiloh Community Fellowship Church in Asbury, according to the Prosecutor's Office.
In all, $15,000 in cash was disbursed in exchange for the total of 218 guns to the anonymous owners, no questions asked.
"We had people from all over — points north to south," Paterson said. "We did not ask them where they were from, since the program is completely anonymous.
"Many who were happy to have the alternative location just offered the information. I think the fact that people were offered an alternative site for the first time really attributed to the program's success."
The addition of the Rumson location this year was due to an anonymous
donation of $25,000 from someone who stipulated that the funding be
contingent upon the use of Rumson as an alternate drop-off, Prosecutor's Office Spokesman Charles Webster said.
The majority of guns turned in were pistols —126 of them. "In the majority of crimes in which a gun is used, the type of gun used is a pistol, or handgun," Paterson said. "So the fact that so many were turned in is a positive sign."
In addition to the pistols, 39 operable shotguns and 24 rifles were turned over, according to a release from the Prosecutor's Office.
Four inoperable weapons and 20 BB guns were also surrendered, it added, as were a Colt AR-15, a Mossberg assault shotgun and a World War II-era Japanese bolt-action rifle.
“These weapons will never be used to commit a crime, they can’t end up in the wrong hands of the wrong person and no one will be injured or killed because these weapons will never have the opportunity to be pointed at a human being," Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni said. "Case closed. All these weapons will now be destroyed."