Celebratory gunfire is getting a serious crackdown in East Palo Alto, where police plan to more than triple the number of officers on city streets on New Year's Eve, the department announced.
The East Palo Alto Police Department sent out notices to residents where the city's ShotSpotter gunfire-detection system has spotted illegal gunfire at or near a residence. ShotSpotter pinpoints gunshots within seconds so that police can locate and respond to the crime.
"Discharging any firearm in public -- even celebratory gunfire -- is a felony and carries a sentence of up to 3 years in prison. That time is dramatically increased if the gunfire results in injury or death," Chief Ronald Davis wrote in the notice.
Officers will be assigned to specific areas of the city that had the highest levels of gunshots and fireworks recorded last New Year's Eve.
The department will also enforce the illegal fireworks ordinance and the 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew for minors. Officers will also be on the lookout for drunk drivers and those who might seek opportunities to commit crimes, the department said.
East Palo Alto is the only city in the U.S. that employs ShotSpotter technology citywide.