Thursday, December 30, 2010

Celebrating the New Year with Gunfire will Not be Tolerated

The following information is a reprint from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, but is applicable to the City of Arcadia:

Every year, a significant number of people throughout the City and County of Los Angeles engage in the extremely dangerous practice of discharging firearms into the air to celebrate the arrival of the New Year.  In an effort to educate and warn the public of the problem, the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) have embarked upon an awareness campaign. This campaign is designed to help reduce incidents of indiscriminate gunfire that, while on the decline, has continued to be a deadly tradition in our County and in our City.

The Gunfire Reduction Campaign aims to advise the community that celebrating the New Year with gunfire will not be tolerated in the County andCity of Los Angeles.  California Penal Code Section 246.3 prohibits negligent discharging of firearms.  Any person who violates Section 246.3 will have their firearm confiscated and will be arrested for a felony crime.

On Monday, December 27, 2010, LAPD Assistant Chief Sandy Jo MacArthur and LASD Sheriff Lee Baca held a news conference to publicize their concern about holiday-related celebratory gunfire.  To make a significant impact on this problem, thousands of “Don’t Shoot” flyers and posters have been printed and distributed to the community.  It is the hope of both agencies that with the partnership of the media and the distribution of “Don’t Shoot” flyers, the public will be informed regarding the dangers and dire consequences of this irresponsible act.

On July 4, 1999, Brian Perez, a young, outgoing, 9 year-old boy was playing with family members in the front yard of his home.  Someone in the area shot a firearm into the sky and the stray bullet struck Brian in the head, killing him.  Assistant Chief MacArthur stated “Thankfully, since Brian Perez, and with the effectiveness of this Gunfire Reduction Campaign, there have been no known deaths by indiscriminate gunfire in the City of Los Angeles.”

The public is also reminded that toy replica guns that resemble real weapons are also a concern for law enforcement officers and that playing with replica guns is strongly discouraged.

Together, all law enforcement agencies ask the public to STOP the senseless act of firing weapons into the air and CELEBRATE SAFELY. 

In addition, should a shooting occur, members of the community are encouraged to call 9-1-1. 

To report information regarding a crime, please call your local sheriff's station or police station.  Or if you wish to remain Anonymous, call “LA Crime Stoppers” by dialing 800-222-TIPS (8477), texting the letters TIPLA plus your tip to CRIMES (274637), or using the website 

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