The City of Houston recently held a “no questions asked” gun buyback program. Hundreds of guns were surrendered within hours, including dozens of guns made from plastic.
City leaders allocated more than $44 million in February to tackle the city’s rising violent crime rate. As part of the initiative, $1 million was set aside for a gun buyback program.
The first event of the program was Saturday, July 30. The line of people wanting to turn in their old firearms stretched for a couple of miles. In exchange for their unwanted firearms, the city was giving people between $50 and $200 per gun in the form of Visa gift cards.
Different styles and calibers of rifles, pistols, and shotguns were all turned in. Most of the guns were fairly aged and worn, but not all of them.
One man, though, found a bit of a loophole in the system, turning in dozens of 3D printed guns.
The man told local media in Houston each gun cost about $3 to make. He turned in 62 printed guns, was paid $50 per gun, and profited about $2900.
The man, who apparently wants to remain anonymous, said his goal wasn’t personal profit, but to send a message to city leaders about spending taxpayer money for an event that will have little impact on crime.
Houston’s mayor called the buyback a huge success with more than 800 guns collected and close to $100,000 in gift cards distributed. However, the city will now exclude 3D printed guns from future buyback events.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.