In a move that seemed to confuse even the police officer who greeted him at the station, a Texas man turned in his legally owned AK-47 to his local police station in an attempt to do his part to stop mass killings, according to KTBC-TV.
The man, identified in the story only as Billy from Austin, made sure to alert the media of his intentions so KTBC could send a reporter and a camera to document him bringing his weapon to an officer who appeared unsure what to do with it at first. Billy called for other legal gun owners to have the courage to follow his lead.
"I would encourage anyone that is in my position to do the same," Billy told KTBC. "It's not easy. It takes a lot more thought and a lot more courage to do this than to buy it."
So, with the local news on board to film every step, Billy courageously loaded his AK-47 into his truck and drove to the police station. He left the gun in the truck and walked inside to announce his intentions to the officer on duty at the front counter.
As the officer was on the phone checking on what do do in this scenario, Billy took a moment to lecture him about the need to have these weapons off the street.
"If anyone else is wondering what to do with their assault rifles, this is one option, surrender it," Billy tells the officer. "Y'all had a program once."
"Either that or sell it back to a gun shop," the officer replied.
"No, I don't want it out on the street. You don't want it out on the street either," Billy said. "Y'all's job is hard enough."
Another officer escorted Billy out to the truck to retrieve the gun. When the transaction is complete, Billy tells the officer, "I hope you appreciate one more off the street," another comment that suggests Billy feels he is doing the police a favor.
"We need to get them off the streets," Billy told KTBC. "I need to get mine off the streets. I can only speak for myself and pray for everyone else."
Billy's obsession with getting his AK-47 "off the streets" is odd, considering it wasn't really "on the street." It was presumably in secure possession of a responsible, nonviolent owner; Billy told KTBC he had owned a gun since he was 10 years old.
Unless Billy had intentions of committing mass murder himself, he did not prevent any tragedies by giving away his own gun. But, that reality doesn't stop Billy from being quite pleased with himself.
"I'm trying to make a safer place for you and me and my grandbabies," Billy said.
Watch the staged news event below: