ALBANY COUNTY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — State officials say this is a historic day because nine simultaneous gun buyback event locations took place in the state; Watervliet was one of them. This is all a part of the Attorney General’s effort to get unwanted guns off the street. 

“And out of closets,” Cassandra Deguire Walker, Regional Director of Intergovernmental Affairs, said. “Every gun taken is a possible tragedy averted. So we are just doing our part.”

Watervliet Mayor Charles Patricelli said he was surprised to see the overwhelming response.

“After looking at the line and the number of cars here, I was just in shock. I said, ‘This is awesome.’ And I’m so glad to see so many people turning in their guns,” he said.

Something the City of Cohoes Police Chief, Todd Waldin, was grateful to see.

“I think it’s big because the guns can fall into the wrong hands intentionally or accidentally when people are clearing out their houses or their loved ones passed away…and there are guns that are left in the houses,” Chief Waldin said. “Children can get a hold of them. People with mental health issues can get a hold of them. And so what this does if you take 100 guns off the street, then that’s 100 less chances for something to go wrong.”

And that’s why Tom Kuhn drove from Halfmoon to take advantage of the event.

“I had a person passing away give me a handgun, and I’m gonna get $500 for that, so I’m a happy guy,” he said.

Last year, the gun buyback event collected about fifty firearms. This year, police say they are confident they have collected over 100 but still need to confirm the final count. Multiple municipalities and police officials were a part of organizing the event.