City will enforce ‘no fireworks’ law

Published 6:00 am Friday, November 23, 2001

Brookhaven Police Chief Arlustra “Pap” Henderson is sending anearly message to those looking to celebrate the holidays: “NoFireworks in the City.”

“In the past, we have tried to go along with some of thefireworks,” Henderson said. “Lately, it has gotten out ofhand.”

Henderson cited past complaints from residents about fireworksusage.

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“This past Fourth of July, it was unreal the number of calls wegot about shooting fireworks in the city,” he said. “I can’t blamethem at all, and we’re going to do our best to satisfy thesecitizens.”

Buying or shooting fireworks is prohibited in the city limits.Henderson said fireworks may be bought in the county, but theyshould stay there as well.

“Between parents and children, we are going to charge somepeople for shooting fireworks in the city,” he said.

For parents, Henderson said they may be charged withcontributing to the delinquency of a minor. That carries a $399dollar fine in city court.

Children could be taken to youth court, the chief said.

Adults arrested for shooting fireworks could be charged withdisturbing the public peace. That has a $269 fine in the citycourt.

Henderson also mentioned potential hazards associated withfireworks. He said bottle rocket and other fireworks debris oftenlands in yards and on homes, businesses and vehicles.

“It’s a fire hazard for one thing and it’s dangerous,” Hendersonsaid.

Henderson wanted to especially emphasize the “no fireworks”message to parents. Fireworks instructions encourage parentalsupervision when young people use fireworks, but the chief said theparents could face charges if their children are caught shootingfireworks in the city.

“It’s not OK for parents to supervise. It’s illegal period,”Henderson said. “We’re not being mean, but we’re going to enforcethe law.”