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    Gun Safety and Respect for Property Urged in East Mountains


    Residents of the East Mountain area of Bernalillo County are reporting an increase in illegal shooting, according to Bernalillo County District 5 Commissioner Charlene Pyskoty.

    In response, Commissioner Pyskoty is urging those who want to discharge firearms in the county to be careful and respectful around residents’ property and livestock.

    “Whether the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic public health order has you looking for something to do or you are hunting, I’m urging everyone to practice safety in the East Mountain community and throughout the county,” says Commissioner Charlene Pyskoty. “These are people’s homes, pets, livestock, and children that can be victims of a stray bullet. Please preserve the peace and quiet that we enjoy in our rural areas by discharging your firearms only at approved shooting ranges.”

    Bernalillo County has a specific ordinance that deals with the discharge of firearms:

    Sec. 54-31. - Discharge of firearms prohibited; exceptions; penalty for violation of section.

    (a) It is unlawful for any person to discharge any firearm in the county. This section does not prohibit discharge of a firearm by:

    (1) Peace officers engaged in the performance of their official duties.

    (2) Members of the armed forces of the United States or the National Guard when such members are engaged in the performance of their official duties.

    (3) Persons exercising their rights of defense of self, property or others.

    (4) A person in attendance at an authorized hunter's safety course or an authorized handgun safety course.

    (5) A person engaging in the use of a firearm for target shooting at an established range authorized by the governing body.

    (6) A person engaging in an organized competition authorized by the local governing body.

    (7) A person pursuing legal hunting or trapping activities.

    (8) A person engaged in the humane euthanasia of his/her livestock.

    (b) Upon conviction of a violation of this section, the weapon or firearm shall be forfeited to the Sheriff's Department by order of the court.

    Violation of these laws is punishable by up to $300 in fines and 90 days in jail, or both.

    In the past 30-days, 35 reports of illegal firearm discharge have been reported to the Sheriff’s Office east area command. Any illegal firearms discharge or questions regarding firearms laws should be directed to the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office at 505-798-7000.


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