2012-07-13 / Top Stories

Sanders Chides Brown On Gun Buy-Backs


City Councilman James Sanders Jr. has accused DA Brown of refusing to hold gun buy-backs. Sanders holds a rifle turned in at a former gun buy-back program. City Councilman James Sanders Jr. has accused DA Brown of refusing to hold gun buy-backs. Sanders holds a rifle turned in at a former gun buy-back program. In the wake of several shootings in Rockaway and a triple homicide in Springfield Gardens, City Councilman James Sanders Jr. is chiding Queens District Attorney Richard Brown for having a “blind spot” in the battle against gun violence.

“Every DA has a gun buy-back program except Brown,” Sanders said in a prepared statement this week. “What body count will be enough? Let’s be wise about this.”

Sanders, who is actively running for the State Assembly, added that Brown has not held a buy-back program for three years, while other DAs seem to run them on a regular basis.

“The last Queens program, held on the mainland, took a large number of guns off the street,” Sanders argues.

A spokesperson for Brown says that the gun buy-back programs “are just one of many strategies that we utilize to keep guns off the streets and we will utilize them again in the future when we deem them appropriate.”

Brown maintains that his office has made the decrease of weapons on the streets of Queens his “top priority.”

The proliferation of weapons has become a major concern in Rockaway since the summer began.

Statistics show that one in five homicides in New York City occurred in and around city public housing complexes, such as those that dot the Rockaway peninsula.

In fact, a study of all the reported shootings in Rockaway shows that the great majority of them occur within ten blocks of Beach 43 Street.One in four, 25 percent, of the gun seizures was done in city public housing complexes.

The number of people shot in New York City this year in relation to the same period last year increased 46 percent. Shooting incidents in Rockaway are way up in relation to any recent year to which you want to compare the recent spate of shootings. Local sources have told The Wave that the recent onslaught of shootings was due to a battle between the Gang of Apes and the 40’s Boyz, both centered in the Ocean Bay Houses. Those sources say that one teen has been shot twice in the last month due to the gang war.

In Patrol Borough Queens South, which encompasses eight precincts in Queens, including both of Rockaway’s precincts, there have been nearly 20 shootings this month, statistics show.

During the Rockaway shooting spree that began with the coming of summer, one man was killed and seven were wounded. There were four additional shooting incidents in which shots were fired but nobody was hit.

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