On a day when Philadelphia’s homicide rate reached 200, the police commissioner and district attorney made an appeal to residents who know of illegal guns in homes, says the Philadelphia Inquirer. They pitched this deal: Allow police searches and no one will be charged with illegal possession of any firearms found. the plan gives “a mom, a dad, a grandfather, a homeowner who wants to get an illegal gun out of their house, a simple and easy way to get rid of it,” said District Attorney Lynne Abraham.
Nearly 90 percent of the city homicides this year – 16 more than last year at this time – were by handgun, said Police Commissioner Sylvester Johnson. The latest gun-removal initiative comes after a buy-back program started last year that Johnson said has resulted in the recovery of 1,200 firearms. The search program, modeled after one in St. Louis, Mo., requires police to get consent from a homeowner or renter who is at least 21 to search a home, Abraham said.