The Atlanta Injury News Blog

Group Pushes to Stop Celebratory Gunfire in Atlanta

What goes up must come down. Henry Adams of DeKalb County knows that all too well.

Adams was spurred to action after 4-year-old Marquel Peters was killed on New Year's Eve 2010. A stray bullet hit the boy while he sat in a DeKalb church.

Now Adams is leading a grassroots push to stop celebratory gunfire in metro Atlanta, Channel 2 Action News reports.

"We have a problem here in the community," Adams told Channel 2. "These people are shooting guns, whether they are legal or illegal, right now they're being irresponsible and people are losing their lives."

The problem is getting worse, according to Adams. He says he's received calls from Sandy Springs, Dunwoody, Decatur, and the entire Memorial Drive corridor reporting celebratory gun fire this past New Year's Eve.

"We're talking about a war zone, people putting their phones up against their windows saying, 'Can you hear this? What are we going to do about this?'" Adams said.

Adams and his group, Citizens Against Celebratory Gunfire, are spearheading a movement to stop reckless, unnecessary gunfire in the Atlanta area. The group's message seems like common sense.

There are countless safer, more responsible ways to celebrate an occasion than firing a gun. Why endanger the lives of others when you could shoot off fireworks or blow an air horn?

If you or someone you know is injured by celebratory gun fire, you can file a civil suit against the culprit. A successful suit would allow you to claim damages for your medical costs, pain and suffering, and lost wages.

Alternatively, if a loved one is killed by celebratory gunfire, you can file a wrongful death suit against the shooter. However, due to the nature of celebratory gunfire, it may be difficult to prove just who fired the bullet.

Of course, celebratory gunfire could soon be a thing of the past, at least in Atlanta. Adams hopes that police will begin using tracking technology to track down the people responsible. He believes that increased prosecution will help put an end to the practice.

Jan. 3, 2013 Editor's Note: This post was updated to clarify that Henry Adams is not related to 4-year-old Marquel Peters.

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