This Thursday is July 4th, a holiday filled with fireworks, hot dogs and the inevitable chud who will decide to fire his gun into the air.
Because of this, the Tampa Police Department recently sent out their annual reminder to please refrain from celebratory gunfire.
“A single bullet fired into the air can come down at speeds up to 300 feet per second,” stated a sobering video posted to TPD's social media. “The result? Property damage, injury, or even death anywhere within a two-mile radius of the shot. What in a two-mile radius matters to you?”
Unfortunately, this type of warning is completely necessary.
Last year on July 4th, three incidents of stray bullets damaging property or injuring people were reported in Tampa, the worst of which involved a man watching fireworks at Busch Gardens, who was randomly shot in the shoulder. In another incident, a woman came home to her apartment to find a bullet hole in the ceiling of her bedroom, and another woman found a bullet hole in her car windshield.
These sort of things seem to happen almost every single Independence Day. In 2015, a woman was shot in the leg by a stray bullet while at Busch Gardens, and in 2012 another woman was shot and injured in Temple Terrace.
“Don’t ruin a good time with dangerous, unnecessary, celebratory gunfire,” said Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan in the video. “There are consequences to your actions.”