Firing a gun into the air at the strike of the New Year is not only dangerous but illegal, local authorities warn.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has embarked on an awareness campaign to help reduce incidents of indiscriminate gunfire.
The Gunfire Reduction Campaign aims to advise the community that ringing in the New Year with gunfire will not be tolerated in Lancaster, Palmdale or anywhere in Los Angeles County, and violators will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
California Penal Code Section 246.3 prohibits negligent discharging of firearms. Any person who violates Section 246.3 will be arrested for a felony, punishable by up to one year in state prison, officials warn.
If a stray bullet from your firearm should kill someone, you can be charged with murder.
Researchers report that a fired bullet into the air can climb up to two miles high and can return at speeds of up to 700 feet per second. A velocity of only 200 feet per second is sufficient to penetrate the human skull. Discharging a firearm into the ground also has the dangerous potential of a ricocheted bullet or secondary blast of debris or rocks.
“We ask for you to celebrate the holidays safely, and please don’t fire your gun into the air this New Year’s,” states a community advisory by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
Anyone who witnesses this type of criminal activity in the Antelope Valley should contact the Lancaster Sheriff’s Station at 661-948-8466 or the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station at 661-272-2400. For emergencies, call 9-1-1.