INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - An east side pizza shop is offering a delicious reward for people who help get guns off of the streets in one of the city’s most crime-ridden neighborhoods.
“When you pass here right off of 36th and go all of the way down to 25th street and over, it is like a war zone. It is not getting any better,” said Donald Dancy, the owner of D & C Pizza.
Dancy makes some of the most popular pizzas the east side has to offer and has been on the corner of 38th and Sherman for more than three decades. He is now working on a new recipe that will help stop the ongoing crime around his pizza shop.
Dancy is offering his customers a free extra large pizza in exchange for a gun off the streets. It's a simple promotion that he believes can have a huge impact on the crime rates. A pizza for a gun may sound like an odd trade off, since guns sell for hundreds on the streets, but Dancy says he has plenty of customers who carry illegal guns that would participate.
“I can see kids 14 through 18 coming in here and buying a pizza and their guns fall out,” said Dancy.
If the plan is approved by police, Dancy says he will hold the guns in a safe place until officers arrive to pick them up.
“I think what he is trying to do is basically police ourselves without the police…take these guns off of the streets without losing lives in the process,” said Dancy.
Other local businesses and churches are interested in following D & C Pizza’s lead, but know it will not be easy to get guns off of the streets.
Bishop Damon Roach of First Christian Baptist Church worked with the Marion County Sheriff’s Department in 2013 and 2014 to collect illegal guns. His church used donations to pay people up to $600 to get a weapon off of the street. His church was vandalized and set on fire in retaliation, so he's concerned that could happen to other businesses who try to get the illegal weapons off the streets again.
“First Christian would gladly open our doors to get guns off of the streets and will volunteer money to get guns off of the streets. I think that it is more of a movement now then it was three years ago,” said Bishop Roach.
D & C Pizza can not collect any guns until they have a meeting and plan out the collection process with IMPD and the Marion County Sheriff’s Department.