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Payday Coming for South Tampa Gun Swappers

The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office is setting up shop Saturday, Feb. 9 to finalize its purchase of guns during last weekend’s Operation Gun Swap buyback.

Payday is almost here for South Tampa residents who brought their guns to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office’s Operation Gun Swap last Saturday, Feb. 2.

Deputies plan to return to the five collection locations in the county Feb. 9 and Feb. 10 to give those who received vouchers $75 per gun in trade for their troubles.

All told, the one-day operation resulted in 2,808 firearms collected, according to the sheriff’s office’s website. Two unarmed rocket launchers were also turned in.

At $75 a pop, that amounts to a payout of $210,600. It’s unclear if the sheriff’s office is paying for the rocket launchers.

The gun buyback was funded by a donation from the Shimberg Foundation and money from the sheriff’s office’s forfeiture fund, said Capt. Chad Chronister in a previous interview. No taxpayer dollars were used, he added.

The swap was staged as a service to Hillsborough residents, Chronister said.

The buyback enabled the sheriff’s office to “obtain firearms people don’t want to begin with,” he said. “If getting rid of an unsecured, unwanted firearm prevents (a crime), it’s an additional benefit.”

Have a voucher from last week’s gun swap you want to trade in for cash?

Deputies are setting up shop Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the following locations:

  • Sheriff's Operations Center, 2008 E. 8th Ave.
  • 13501 N. Nebraska Ave., which is the site of the closed Sunoco gas station
  • IGA Grocery Store, 14720 E. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
  • Sheriff's Town 'N Country Substation, 7519 W. Waters Ave.
  • Sheriff's Progress Village Substation, 7935 Flower Ave.

Vouchers can be exchanged at any of the locations. To find out more, call 813-247-8115.

Editor's note: This article was updated Feb. 9 at 8:30 a.m. to include the Sunday hours and the sheriff's office's newly released tally of guns collected.

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