The people of Marin county, California, have been invited to trade in their toy guns and violent games for ice cream.

The move is a new initiative by Marin county district attorney Ed Berberian, in partnership with Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream, and the Center For Domestic Peace.

"As we know domestic violence incidents almost always have children present and these children develop over time imprinted images of the family violence," Berberian said. "These children then carry those experiences into their adult lives and often repeat the pattern of violence in their own family units."

Last year, Berberian unsuccessfully focused his efforts on real firearms. Berberian invited citizens to turn in their firearms for cash. The initiative saw 857 firearms turned in, but the program ran out of money after losing US$100,000.

The county was forced to distribute US$70,000 in "IOU" vouchers.