DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — A billboard on a major Durham intersection is urging residents to celebrate the coming new year without shooting guns into the air.
The billboard, designed by three Durham fifth-graders, tells motorists that, between now and Jan. 2, they should “have fun, but don’t shoot a gun.”
It’s part of the Durham Police Department’s effort to stop gun violence. Celebratory gunfire means a bullet fired into the air will fall back to Earth at speeds of up to 700 feet per second.
Durham police last year received nearly 2,500 calls of shots being fired, most of them in May and July to coincide with Cinco de Mayo and the Fourth of July.
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