‘It’s stupid’: Gunshots ring out in KC to celebrate New Year, leaving city leaders frustrated

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — City officials have urged residents to stop for years, but their pleas have fallen on deaf ears. Many Kansas Citians celebrated the New Year by firing guns in the air.

Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas said this tradition is insanity.

“I don’t understand it. It’s stupid. Put your guns down. There’s no reason to shoot up in the air. The bullet goes up, right. It comes back down. And in the past, it has killed young people in Kansas City,” Lucas said.

It wasn’t just Kansas City, Missouri, though. A video from the Strawberry Hill neighborhood in KCK shows the barrage of gunfire that could be heard across some parts of the metro overnight.

KCMO police received 271 calls reporting gunshots on New Year’s Eve. Shot Spotter, a system that identifies the sound of gunfire, registered 240 gunshot sounds in the city. In total, around 1,600 rounds were fired, police said.

Twelve homes had bullets fly through them.

Officials said that’s more than usual.

“This is quite a bit more than any year I can recall since I started keeping track of this. In years past, I recall there being usually reports of four or five homes struck by indiscriminate gunfire,” a Kansas City police spokesman said.

Luckily, it appears no one was hurt by the gunfire this year.

Police believe the reason for the increased number is that more people were home this year due to COVID-19.

“I was concerned that with fewer people being out and about at bars and events that this may lead to more gunfire. It appears that gunfire numbers were similar to last year, or a little less, but more people are reporting their homes struck,” the KCPD spokesman said.

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