Given the surge in shootings in Philadelphia, city leaders and police are asking people to turn in their guns this weekend — no questions asked.
“Get those guns, run that room, see what’s in there, find out what is being hidden in your house, take it out and turn it in,” City Councilmember Cindy Bass said Thursday at a news conference outside Police Headquarters.
“Community members who submit firearms will not be asked to produce identification,” Police Commissioner Danielle M. Outlaw said. “In addition, the submission of a firearm will not trigger an investigation of the person who relinquished it.”
The number of homicides in the city in 2020 soared to 261 as of Thursday night. That’s a 29% increase from the same period last year and the highest number of killings in nearly three decades, when 275 homicides were recorded for the same period in 1991. Most homicides result from shootings.
City Council this week held two emergency virtual hearings on the city’s spike in gun violence as leaders tried to identify the reasons behind it and form strategies to combat it.