Law enforcement: Keep skies bullet-free NYE
TAMPA (FOX 13) - Shortly after the ball dropped in 2012, so did Diego Duran, a Ruskin teen who was hit in the head by a falling .45 caliber bullet fired into the air by someone celebrating the New Year.
"We saw the x-ray and our life changed instantly, from celebration of the new year to instantly being in the position where we could lose our son's life," said his mother Sandy Duran in a PSA video.
Duran survived, but since then, it's become his family's mission to stop celebratory gunfire. The family's message is being echoed by law enforcement agencies across the country.
Firing a gun into the air is dangerous - and it is illegal.
"Be aware of the consequences, you're going to seriously injure someone or take someone's life and this can all be avoided simply don't do it," said HCSO spokesperson Larry McKinnon.
Law enforcement says bullets fired straight up into the air can come down several miles away.
"Take time think before you do something. Come to the range, but don't discharge firearms outside," said Shooter's World General Manager Bruce Kitzis. "That danger is there and it's easily preventable," he added.
"If it could happen here it could happen anywhere," noted Diego Duran.
And just about anyone could be next.
"If affects us all, whether we have guns or not, and it can kill anyone out there," Sandy Duran said.