Montgomery Police Announce Zero Tolerance Policy for ‘Celebratory Gunfire’ Fourth of July Weekend
The Montgomery Police Department is ramping up neighborhood blue light patrols, employing the STAR Center and targeting identified “hot spots” to help assure the city’s safe celebration of the Fourth of July. MPD also has adopted a zero-tolerance policy for “celebratory gunfire” and will aggressively enforce Montgomery’s new ordinance targeting the illegal discharge of weapons.
Those arrested under the ordinance face a $100 fine and seven days in jail for the first offense, with penalties increasing up to $500 in fines and six months in jail for subsequent convictions.
Police Chief Ernest Finley, Jr. said the ordinance is an important tool in helping curb celebratory gunfire, which causes property damage, greatly heightens the risk of personal injury, and alarms neighborhoods. “Our message to the community is to find another way to celebrate. Gunfire is dangerous, illegal and can land you in jail,” said Finley.
Chief Finley said MPD has analyzed areas that consistently report celebratory gunfire and will focus high visibility enforcement in those locations. In addition, officers will staff the STAR Center, MPD’s real-time crime center, which uses video surveillance to enhance response time and provide valuable information to responding officers.