NY offers $500 reward for reporting illegal gun owners, PSA imminent

handgun
Photo Credit: CBS 6 Albany

New York Police departments and citizens had absolutely no idea a hotline was set up a year ago by the governor’s office for residents to call and report people they suspected owned illegal firearms for a $500 reward.

So, the state announced this week they will begin running Public Service Announcements to get the word out.

CBS News Albany reported Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s “Gun Tip Line” was set up in February 2012 so “New Yorkers can call a toll free hotline to alert police if they believe someone they know has an illegal gun. The call would be picked up by state police and local law enforcement would be notified if the tip seemed reliable.” If an arrest was made, the report said, the caller could receive a monetary reward.

However, two of the three police departments contacted by the news station had never even heard of the program until they received a letter about it this week.

All three police departments said “they have yet to get a tip from state police, let alone make an arrest,” CBS 6 reported.

“The average citizen doesn’t equate with the Governor’s office,” Troy City Police Chief John Tedesco told CBS. “It is their local PD, that is who they are going to call first.”

“The first we heard of it was yesterday, Tom King of the NY State Rifle and Pistol Association said. “This was a well kept secret.”

“This initiative seeks to turn neighbor against neighbor and use their own tax dollars to pay for the $500 reward,” Republican Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin said.

Read more and watch the report from CBS 6 Albany here.

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