Gunshots or fireworks? While that may be a running joke in the city’s urban core, the Kansas City Missouri Police Department and Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas strongly, emphasis on strongly discourage celebratory gunfire when celebrating the New Year’s holiday.
“This type of gunfire is 100% preventable,” said KCPD Chief Rick Smith. “Not only is it a crime, but in a condensed city environment like we have here, it is extremely dangerous.”
Simple physics dictate that what goes up, must come down. And according to KCPD’s Sergeant Jake Becchina, that bullet that was just shot in to the air comes down at roughly the same speed it left the barrel, roughly 1,200 to 2,000 feet per second depending on the weapon used.
Last year on New Year’s Eve, five residences were struck by celebratory gunfire. Between 6 p.m. on December 31, 2019 to 6 a.m. on January 1, 2020, there were 317 calls to 911 reporting gunfire.
This year, because of the pandemic, it is unknown what to expect in terms of shot fired calls being reported. Becchina did add that there would be a full compliment of officers on duty to respond to these tyoes of calls.
“If we get a high concentration of calls from one location, there will be a follow-up investigation and charges could be filed,” said Chief Smith. “What were looking for here is community cooperation.”
Mayor Quinton Lucas, echoed Chief Smith’s sentiments regarding ringing in the new year by discharging a weapon in to the air. “Put the guns down, do not make that part of your New Year’s Eve celebration,” Lucas said. “We have already had one tragedy where a young girl was killed by celebratory gunfire, we don’t need any more.”