It’s the first day of 2016 and just after midnight, a nine-year-old girl was shot while walking out of church, possibly the result of celebratory gunfire, Orlando police said.
The Sun Sentinel reports:
Officers responded to a church in the 800 block of South Kirkman Road after receiving reports of a shooting victim.
The girl, who police have not identified, had just left church when she was hit in the right arm by the bullet, police said.
She was treated at the scene by the Orlando Fire Department. No bullet was recovered at the scene, police said.
Officers have no suspect information because the round “seemed to be from the voluminous amounts of gunfire” happening at the time.
The unidentified 9-year-old will remember the first day of 2016 as the day an irresponsible gun owner shot her.
On Dec. 30th, Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings said celebratory gunfire is illegal and dangerous.
“There are many ways to enjoy the New Year, but firing random shots in the air should not be among them,” Demings said in a statement.
Charges for firing a firearm in public or on a residential property range from a first-degree misdemeanor to third-degree felony, Demings said.
Meanwhile in Ohio, Columbus Police warned residents in a Facebook post not to fire guns in celebration of the New Year, saying random gunfire has injured and killed dozens in the U.S. over the past decade.
“Not only do the calls tie up 911 dispatchers with some 150 calls in a short period of time, but shots can prove deadly,” the post reads, in part. “Also children don’t need to grow up hearing so much gunfire that they think it’s normal.”
Stockton, California police also warned of the dangers in celebratory gunfire.
Quite a few police departments weighed in on celebratory gunfire and its consequences.
It doesn’t take a genius to figure this out. If you shoot a gun in the air, the bullet is going to come back down. If you shoot it all willy nilly, it could kill a person because it’s a lethal weapon.
A child shooting could not possibly wait. It had to happen just nine minutes after midnight to bring in the New Year. We can’t seem to get through one day without hearing of a child being shot, sometimes ‘accidentally.’
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