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Citrus Heights police announce action plan for cracking down on illegal fireworks

Sentinel staff report–
Citrus Heights police this year are enlisting the help of drones and arson investigators to assist in enforcement of the city’s ban on illegal fireworks, which police say are primarily imported from outside the state.

Lieutenant Kris Frey told the City Council in an update last week that police analyzed data from the past three years to identify peak times and locations for illegal fireworks on July 3 and 4. Resources will be deployed during those times and in “problem areas.”

In 2018, Citrus Heights responded to more than 150 calls for service from residents reporting illegal fireworks in various parts of the city. Most calls that year came from the Antelope-Sunrise area around Oak Avenue, as well as near Lichen Drive, around Van Maren Lane and Auburn Boulevard, and the area north of Rusch Park.

On July 3 this year, Frey said the department will have two dedicated units on the streets, with officers paired with an arson investigator. A third unit will have a drone operator and an observer. The units will also be supplemented by standard patrol officers.

Similar efforts will be deployed on July 4, police said.

Frey said residents are encouraged to call in illegal fireworks using the department’s non-emergency line: (916) 727-5500. Those with a specific address for where illegal firework have been set off in the past are asked to call the department’s tip line: (916) 727-5524.

Fireworks labeled “safe and sane” are allowed to be sold and safely discharged in Citrus Heights, from noon on June 28 through 10 p.m. on July 5.

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