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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – As South Florida prepares to ring in the new year, local leaders are once again pleading with area residents to put the guns down, especially at midnight.

On Thursday, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez and Miami-Dade Commissioner Audrey Edmonson were joined by a host of law enforcement at the semi-annual “One Bullet Kills The Party” press event.

“We come together every year to ask and encourage the residents of our community to lay their guns down and celebrate the holiday with partying, fireworks, what have you,” Edmonson.

Edmonson added that in addition to not firing a gun into the air, it was also time for not shooting each other.

“It’s time that we stop blaming, or asking what are the police doing about the shootings,” said Edmonson. “It’s time for we, as a community, come together to stop all of the shootings and all the crime going on. We are losing our future residents. Over the past month, we have lost a lot of our teenagers, a small two-year-old and a mother, just in her car driving home from work. So it is time that we, as a community, come together.”

The twice a year (also held before the July 4th holiday) event started after a stray bullet landed on a party years ago in Overtown, hence the name “One Bullet Kills The Part.”

In recent years in the City of Miami, stray bullets have not been a problem. City officials believe this campaign is the reason why. But they don’t want that record to be ruined by an injury or death this holiday weekend.

Firing a weapon into the air within county limits is not only dangerous but illegal. It is a first-degree misdemeanor. Anyone who is caught firing a weapon into the air could face substantial fines and even time in jail. The time behind bars could be substantial as well if someone is injured or killed.

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