Law enforcement pushes safety message ahead of New Year’s Eve celebrations

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Thousands of people are expected to pack Beale Street for New Year’s Eve, and local law enforcement have more help this year than in years past.

Cover charges and increased security will pay off for the Memphis Police Department, as they’ve now got a blueprint for New Year’s Eve security on Beale Street.

“Many of those additions that occurred over the summer months, the enhancement of the Beale Street, you won’t be able to see because the crowd will be so dense, but those measures will be in place,” MPD Colonel Keith Watson said.

He said that means it should be the safest year yet.

But residents can help keep everyone safe Tuesday evening as well, and it all starts with celebrating responsibly. If you’ll be on Beale, find a safe ride home.

“We encourage all motorists to not drink and drive,” Watson said. “We encourage those that if you plan to go out, designate a driver to take you home.”

And if you don’t, be warned that local law enforcement will be on the lookout.

“We’ll be seeking out those types of drivers,” said Captain Anthony Buckner with the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office. “So one of those things that we encourage people to do is have fun, but secondly drink responsibly if you’re going to consume alcohol.”

Law enforcement also wanted to emphasize that citizens should not shoot firearms into the air as a way of turning the calendar.

“What goes up must come down,” Watson said. “Celebratory gunfire is illegal here in the City of Memphis, as well as extremely dangerous.”

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