Ala. police to patrol for celebratory gunfire

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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Police in Birmingham say more than 100 additional officers will be on patrol during the New Year's holiday searching for anyone ringing in the new year with celebratory gunshots.

AL.com reports (http://bit.ly/YQOCYw) police are launching the fourth year of Operation Crackdown, which targets illegal gunfire and fireworks on New Year's Eve. ShotSpotter, the city's gunfire detection system, reported 693 incidents of gunfire and 919 incidents of fireworks during last year's New Year's Eve holiday period.

In 2008 two people were wounded by falling bullets, and last year a falling bullet hit a Birmingham police cruiser.

The website reports a falling bullet can reach speeds of 300 to 700 feet per second during its descent. A velocity of about 200 feet per second is enough to penetrate a human skull.

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Information from: The Birmingham News, http://www.al.com/birminghamnews



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