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Woman hit by celebratory gunfire in Delray Beach

Woman hit by celebratory gunfire in Delray Beach. (WPEC)
Woman hit by celebratory gunfire in Delray Beach. (WPEC)
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The start of a new year did not start well in Delray Beach.

A woman was hit by celebratory gunfire just after midnight at E. Atlantic Avenue and NE 1st Avenue.

She told police she felt something hit her leg while sitting on the corner.

The bullet, apparently fired during the New Year's revelry, hit her just above the knee. She's been treated and released from the hospital.

New Year’s Eve typically draws a big crowd to Atlantic Avenue.

“It’s insane," said Denise Camacho, a server at Cabana El Rey restaurant.

The eatery is right across the street from where police say the woman was hit by the stray bullet.

“I think it’s pretty scary and I think people should be a little bit more responsible," Camacho said. "I know we’re all celebrating but you can’t just shoot guns in the air."

Police believe the shot that hit her was fired by someone celebrating the New Year.

“There was a lot of just like repeated, like bang, bang, bang, bang, like five or six of them," said Emily Fischer, a cashier at Sloan's Ice Cream on Atlantic Avenue.

Fischer says she heard the gunfire at her home only a couple of blocks from Atlantic Avenue.

"This is crazy. I didn’t think something like that would happen around here," she said.

In a story that aired Tuesday night on CBS12 News, Delray Beach police were warning people not to fire guns in the air.

“It seems like at midnight, people want to take out a gun and shoot it up in the air, not realizing eventually the bullet is gonna land somewhere and it could hit, hurt an innocent person," said Lt. Jeff Rasor of Delray Beach Police.

On Wednesday morning, as bar employees took down New Year’s Eve banners and put away the balloons from last night, visitors on Atlantic Avenue are stunned by the careless gunfire that could’ve claimed a woman’s life.

“I’m very, very saddened about the situation ‘cause this is such a happy place and fun place for families," resident Marla Cohen said.

“It’s just the wrong thing. You don’t shoot a gun around crowds of people at all. You just don’t do that type of stuff," said Sean Barylski, a visitor from Long Island, New York.

Police don’t know where the shot was fired from or who fired it.

It could’ve been someone down the street or a few blocks or even a few miles away.

Police say the gunshot victim was treated and released from Delray Medical Center.

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Police are asking anyone with information on who fired the gunshot to call police. You can also call Crime Stoppers at 800-458-TIPS. You'll remain anonymous and could receive a cash reward if your tip leads to an arrest.

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