Let us destroy your guns before they are ever used in crime, say Northamptonshire Police

Firearms surrendered to the police will be chopped up in a hydraulic guillotine and safely destroyed.
Firearms surrendered to the police will be chopped up in a hydraulic guillotine and safely destroyed.

A national firearms surrender begins this weekend to give "accidental" gun owners the chance to turn in weapons before they ever fall into the wrong hands.

The campaign starts tomorrow (July 20) and will run until August 4, during which time firearms can be handed into the police and safely destroyed for good.

The campaign has been launched to help potentially dozens of people across the county who have may incidentally become gun owners and do not know what to do with them - such as after finding one in a deceased relative's home.

But Northamptonshire Police want residents to hand weapons in so they can be safely destroyed before they can be used for crime.

East Midlands Operational Support Service Superintendent Sarah Johnson said: "Completely lawful people can end up in possession of unlawful firearms for innocent reasons. These people can feel they cannot tell the police because they think they will be prosecuted.

"If we destroy them then there is no chance they will ever become part of crime.

“I would say to those people to call 101 and feel confident that they can give them to us. We want to see them destroyed.”

The offer extends to anyone who may want to give up shooting as a sport or get rid of surplus weapons, and will also accept stun guns, CS spray and airsoft rifles.

Any weapon handed in as part of the surrender will be examined to ensure it is not linked to any criminal activity before it is chopped apart in a hydraulic guillotine.

It comes after a change in gun law in January 2018 meant vintage weapons like service firearms or historic guns became unlawful.

Residents can contact Northamptonshire Police on 101 and ask for their weapon to be collected from their home.