Notts residents urged to hand in unwanted guns to stop them falling into criminal hands

PPC Paddy Tipping and Assistant Chief Constable Kate Meynell
PPC Paddy Tipping and Assistant Chief Constable Kate Meynell

Residents with unwanted guns are being urged to hand them into Nottinghamshire Police to stop them falling into the hands of criminals.

The force is supporting the latest national two-week Firearms Surrender, which starts on Saturday, July 20, and runs until Sunday, August 4.

During the surrender, weapons can be handed in at the front counters at Mansfield, Newark and Radford Road police stations during their normal opening times.

Those surrendering firearms will not face prosecution for the illegal possession and they can remain anonymous.

The surrender does not give an amnesty for the life of the weapon – previous offences linked to the firearm will be investigated.

Assistant Chief Constable Kate Meynell said: "It it an opportunity for us to get firearms off the street. People may have them in their homes and are not sure what to do with them.

"If they ate handed into police stations it gives us an opportunity to deal with them safely."

Anything from guns, ammunitions, air weapons, cs gas and tasers can be handed in.

The Assistant Chief Constable also said that the force will be working with be looking into the weapons which are handed over to see if they were used or connected in any offences.

She said: "We will continue to vigorously investigate criminal offences linked to any firearm recovered.

“The number of firearms offences has fallen in Nottinghamshire over the last three years and the proportion of incidents per head of the population is below the national average, but we are not complacent.

“By supporting the surrender, people could be saving lives. One weapon off the streets is one less that can be used to harm or threaten our communities.”

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So far, the force has seized 56 firearms this year.

And, during the last surrender in Nottinghamshire in November 2017, over 245 items of firearms and ammunition were taken out of circulation.

Paddy Tipping, Nottinghamshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “I’m clear that firearms, in the wrong hands, can cause serious injury or worse. This surrender gives people the opportunity to hand firearms over to the police to prevent them from falling into the hands of criminals.

“Thankfully the chances of becoming a victim of gun crime Nottinghamshire remains low, but one incident is one too many. Every firearm that we can take out of circulation is out of harm’s way and I hope that people with old, disused or unwanted firearms, whether they are real, imitation or antique, will take this opportunity to dispose of them responsibly.”

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If you have a firearm to surrender but cannot get to a designated police station during the surrender period, please call 101 for guidance.

If you know of anyone involved with illegal firearms call Nottinghamshire Police on 101 or independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. If you are a licensed firearm holder who wants advice please contact Nottinghamshire Police on 101.