CONWAY, SC (WMBF)- A string of homicides during the past two weeks in Conway has left two men dead after violent shootings. Now, Conway city leaders are looking for ways to curb the gun violence, including buying the guns back themselves.
"One of the ways that a municipal government can help its citizens is to try and purchase excess guns so that they can be permanently removed from the rotation," said Conway City Councilman Irby Koon.
In 2012, Horry County and Conway Police teamed up to hold the first ever "No Questions Asked" gun buy-back program. Police said it is an effort to lower the risks of a gun falling into the wrong hands.
Koon has lived in Conway for roughly 40 years, he said the gun violence in the area is on the rise.
"I moved here in 1970," Koon said. "The availability of guns, the presence of guns, and the willingness to use guns has increased tremendously."
Horry County Solicitor Jimmy Richardson said while getting just one gun through a buy–back program equals one less gun on the street, getting the guns that are part of the violent crimes should be a priority.
"If you could ever crack the code and get the criminal to turn in the guns that would make it so much better," Richardson said. "But in this case it may be a grandmother or maybe a mother and father that have got a gun laying around and are worried at some point their child will pick the gun up."
The news of two deadly shootings around the start of 2013 might have shocked some people in Conway, Richardson added, but he said it's too early in the year to know if it is a trend.
"Generally when you have one you'll have one not long after that," Richardson said. "Now if it was one per week for the rest of the year or something that was really blowing it out of the water that would be different."
Koon said the only obstacle standing in the way of organizing another buy-back is figuring out the funding.
Last year, prices ranged from $50-200 per gun depending on the type. Koon said regardless of the cost, there will be a buy-back this year.
"Whatever it takes to get it done we'll get it done, there will be another buy-back program."
Thursday, April 24 2014 11:26 PM EDT2014-04-25 03:26:19 GMT
MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - April 25 marks the anniversary of Brittanee Drexel's disappearance. Her family is planning a vigil tomorrow night for the missing teen. WMBF News Reporter Stephanie Robusto talkedMore >>
April 25 marks the anniversary of Brittanee Drexel's disappearance. Her family is planning a vigil tomorrow night for the missing teen.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 10:54 PM EDT2014-04-25 02:54:12 GMT
SURFSIDE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – A WMBF News crews saw authorities remove a car from a Walmart parking lot after responding to a shoplifting incident. Authorities arrested the shoplifting suspect at the WalmartMore >>
A WMBF News crews saw authorities remove a car from a Walmart parking lot after responding to a shoplifting incident.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 10:48 PM EDT2014-04-25 02:48:35 GMT
CONWAY, SC (WMBF) - Grant Holmes' future is fairly certain, but the destination? Still unknown. When you can touch triple digits on a radar gun though, people take notice - and he could be selected asMore >>
Pitching prospect is projected to be taken early in upcoming MLB Draft.
Thursday, April 24 2014 10:45 PM EDT2014-04-25 02:45:45 GMT
COLUMBIA, SC (WMBF) - In a press release issued by the state agency, the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control warns the public of a fraudulent phone caller posing as a health departmentMore >>
In a press release issued by the state agency, the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control warns the public of a fraudulent phone caller posing as a health department employee seeking private information.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 10:44 PM EDT2014-04-25 02:44:03 GMT
HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Checkpoints will be held throughout the county in an effort to reduce drinking and driving-related car crashes. According to a press release, law enforcement officials and theMore >>
Checkpoints will be held throughout the county in an effort to reduce drinking and driving-related car crashes.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 10:42 PM EDT2014-04-25 02:42:48 GMT
MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Florence native Reggie Sanders spent 16 seasons in the big leagues, before retiring after 2007...but he's still plenty involved in sports today, and will be taking his golf gameMore >>
Celebrity golf tournament to help benefit multiple charities this summer.
Thursday, April 24 2014 10:37 PM EDT2014-04-25 02:37:51 GMT
GEORGETOWN, SC (WMBF) - Several new storefronts and buildings are opening doors for business and hosting ribbon cutting ceremonies for the public. According to the Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce,More >>
Several new storefronts and buildings are opening doors for business and hosting ribbon cutting ceremonies for the public.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 9:47 PM EDT2014-04-25 01:47:03 GMT
FLORENCE, SOUTH CAROLINA (WMBF) Florence County said buying four new fire trucks is going to lower taxes. Improve response times and make up for a lack of manpower. The Olanta Fire Station is gettingMore >>
Council members of Florence County said buying four new fire trucks is going to lower taxes. Improve response times and make up for a lack of manpower.More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 9:44 PM EDT2014-04-25 01:44:45 GMT
MURRELLS INLET, SC (WMBF) - A HAZMAT situation is underway at Wachesaw Plantation East on Riverwood Drive. Several emergency crews are on the scene working to assess the situation, according to Gary MocarskiMore >>
Five patients were transported to area hospitals after too much chlorine leaked into a pool at Wachesaw Plantation East on Riverwood Drive. More >>
Thursday, April 24 2014 8:59 PM EDT2014-04-25 00:59:27 GMT
MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The head of Coast RTA has been running the area's only mass transit system for nearly 10 years now. And for nearly 10 years, he has had to endure the wrath from an army of criticsMore >>
After 10 years as CEO of Coast RTA, Myers Rollins points to a significant financial and operational turnaround under his tenure, while critics lambaste him for several missteps. WMBF investigated the controversy brewing at the Coast RTA to see who's getting thrown "Under the Bus"More >>