MIAMI (CBSMiami) – South Florida will ring in a new year this week and local leaders are once again pleading with area residents to put the guns down, especially at midnight.
On Monday Miami-Dade Commissioner Audrey Edmonson was joined City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez and a host of law enforcement at the semi-annual “One Bullet Kills The Party” press event.
Edmonson said you do not celebrate by shooting a gun in the air because when a bullet goes up, it must come down. She added that in addition to not firing a gun into the air, it was also time for not shooting each other.
“In the last month, the headlines in local media were still riddled with incidents of senseless gun violence in our community, and although the numbers are decreasing, one life lost is still one life too many,” Edmonson said. “It pains me to know that while most of us will be enjoying holiday time with family and friends, other families will be mourning the loss of loved ones. I am once again imploring the community to get involved. We have to stop protecting those individuals that are wreaking havoc on our communities and destroying families.”
The twice a year “One Bullet Kills The Party” event (also held before the July 4th holiday) started after a stray bullet landed on a party years ago in Overtown.
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.
Even if you fire your gun and no one is hurt, don’t be surprised if a police officer shows up at your door. The county has a gunfire detection system now that covers approximately 80 percent of Miami. People caught firing guns will be caught. The shot spotting technology, by the way, can tell the difference between gunshots and fireworks.
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.