RACINE – The Racine Police Department, in partnership with Project ChildSafe, is offering free firearm safety kits starting this week. All safety kits include a cable-style gun lock and safety instruction brochure.
The kits will be available starting Wednesday (Oct. 7), while supplies last, at the Ernest and Bernice Styberg COP House, 2347 Anthony Lane. (Wednesdays, 10 a.m. to 12 noon and 2 to 6 p.m.) and at the Richard V. Polzin COP Office, 1900 16th St. (Fridays, 10 a.m. to 12 noon and 2 to 6 p.m.).
In a news release, the RPD reported that while Part I Crime in the City of Racine remains at a 55-year low, an “increase in shots fired and weapons violation complaints during the COVID-19 crisis threatens the significant crime reduction progress achieved to date. Additionally, the increase in firearms being procured on behalf of convicted felons (through illegal straw purchases) further threatens public safety.”
The RPD reported that through early October of this year, police personnel have recovered and inventoried 117 firearms. This year’s weapon recoveries have included “multiple assault-styled weapons, most recently an AK 47 styled assault rifle was recovered on August 9, 2020 during an attempted homicide investigation.”
“While traditionally rare in nature, the recovery of similar assault-style weapons has increased as of late,” the RPD added. “The high capacity magazines and armor piercing ballistic capability of such weapons presents a threat to law enforcement personnel and citizens alike.”
Racine Police have recovered 2,739 firearms since 2004. These weapons were recovered by the RPD during traffic stops, the execution of search warrants and other dangerous calls for service.
The RPD asks citizens to help it address the proliferation of illegal weapons commonly accessible to non-law-abiding citizens. For more information on how to prevent straw purchases (punishable by up to 10 years in prison), see: http://www.dontlie.org/