T.O. police seize 400 guns in 'Safe City' project
Published Tuesday, September 22, 2009 12:49PM EDT
The latest crime prevention project by Toronto police took aim at registered gun owners who opted to give up their firearms.
Police have seized about 400 guns since March after knocking on the doors of registered firearm owners.
Many of these owners had their guns stashed in the closet or in a drawer though a condition of their registration mandates that all firearms are securely stored.
Police did not lay any charges but seized hundreds of weapons.
"I think we've created a safer situation," said Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair. "This is very much an anti-violence measure. This is very much intended to prevent crime and make our city safer."
Blair told a news conference Tuesday afternoon that 30 per cent of guns taken off the streets from criminals have been stolen from registered gun owners.
About 70 per cent of firearms are smuggled in from the U.S. he said.
On average, police seize about two illegal guns a day.
Since January, 259 people have been shot, according to the latest police statistics. That is up from last year which saw 223 shooting victims.
Of the 259 people shot in 2009, statistics show 23 people died from their injuries.
With a report from CTV Toronto's Jim Junkin