MIAMI (CBSMiami) — City of Miami officials want the public to know that it’s great to ring in the New Year with a celebration as long as it doesn’t involve gunfire.
Thursday, Mayor Tomas Regalado, Miami Police Chief Manuel Orosa and other officials held a news conference at Williams Park, 1717 NW 5th Avenue, to implore the public to abandon the tradition of firing bullets into the air to celebrate at midnight on New Year’s Eve.
“They can fall on people, they can fall on children, they are going to land,” said Miami-Dade Commissioner Audrey Edmonson.
In years past, a number of people have been seriously wounded or killed by falling bullets on New Year’s Eve. Those tragic deaths and serious injuries which resulted from stray bullets motivated officials to launch the awareness campaign ‘One Bullet Kills The Party’, to remind the community that stray bullets can injure or kill innocent bystanders.
“We started with Pitbull ‘One Bullet Kills The Party’ and it’s true,” said Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado. “One bullet can kill every party.”
Nearly every year, there are people who ignore the warnings and fire away and cause tragedies.
Just after midnight on Jan. 1, 2010, a 6-year-old Italian tourist was struck in the chest by a falling bullet shortly after midnight as he dined with his parents at a restaurant in Midtown.
An 11-year-old boy playing hide-and-seek behind a couch on Dec. 31, 2007, was struck and killed by five bullets after a man fired celebratory shots into the furniture.
Tragedy also struck in 2007 when one man was killed and four people were wounded, including a 10-year-old girl, as a result of New Year’s Eve gunfire.
“One of our own was hit 10 or 12 years ago. He recovered then retired. He was never the same person,” said Miami Police Chief Manuel Orosa.
‘One Bullet Kills a Party’ is a campaign message that applies to all celebrations. Once again this New Year’s Eve, local leaders ask everyone to remember, what goes up must come down and accidents like these are easily avoided.
If anyone hears gunfire or sees anything suspicious police want you to call them immediately.
“When you see someone firing a gun, call 911,” said commissioner Edmunson.