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Early start for LA weapons buyback

PLEASE NOTE: EDIT CONTAINS CONVERTED 4:3 MATERIAL Los Angeles police usually hold their weapons buyback scheme in May. This year it got underway on December 26th - a direct response to the Connecticut elementary school massacre less than two weeks before. Police trade gift cards for the guns handed in. These gun owners were all for it. SOUNDBITE: UNIDENTIFIED GUN OWNER SAYING (English): "Too bad we wait for something like this that happens, you know, to decide to get rid of the guns, the pistols and the rifles." SOUNDBITE: UNIDENTIFIED GUN OWNER SAYING (English): "Too many people get killed with guns - small guns, rifles, hand guns, any kind of guns - so I'm here to help get rid of the guns I have." The massacre of 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown on December 14th has led to a national outcry against gun violence. The killer, Adam Lanza, who took his own life, had also shot dead his mother at the home he shared with her. The Mayor of Los Angeles is among those demanding tougher gun controls in a nation where weapons ownership is enshrined in the constitution. SOUNDBITE: ANTONIO VILLARAIGOSA, MAYOR OF LOS ANGELES, SAYING (English): "I hope that we're reaching a tipping point to move beyond a national conversation to a national day of action, to a time when we can say 'look, we can pass responsible gun laws in this country without violating the second amendment." The usefulness of buyback schemes like that in Los Angeles has been questioned in the past. A report in 2004 found that the guns surrendered tend to be old or inherited from previous owners and unlikely to be used in crime. The report also said gun owners could replace their firearms easily.

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