Houston police are ramping up for a busy night on New Year’s Eve.
Not only is it a no-refusal weekend, but officers are also cracking down celebratory gunfire for the first time this year.
It’s something Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo has been stressing all week, calling the gunfire tradition “reckless, irresponsible and immoral.”
Acevedo joined officers with HPD’s northeast substation on patrol Saturday night.
“Anything that comes up obviously has to come down. Sadly, sometimes it will come down striking, injuring, and in some occasions people are dying because folks are celebrating by engaging in deadly and unlawful conduct,” Acevedo said during a press conference Friday.
He said celebratory gunfire is also a waste of officers’ time.
Officers have responded to 3,600 calls for service because of discharged firearms in the last five years. The department got 630 calls last year alone.
If you get caught firing a gun to ring in the New Year, HPD says you could face a year in prison and a $4,000 fine.
“Simply make good choices. Life’s about choices and we’re hoping this weekend that people will make good choices, so we don’t have to feel or experience tragedy in our great city,” Acevedo said.