Lawmakers and law enforcement officials addressed a recently announced ban on waterfowl hunting along a river in New Haven.
Sen. Martin Looney joined New Haven Police Chief Anthony Campbell and others for a news conference at 11 a.m. on Thursday where they said the moratorium was a direct result of safety concerns.
DEEP said on Wednesday that a section of the Quinnipiac River will be closed to hunting for a year.
The closure ranges from the southernmost tip of the Fargeorge Preserve at Hemingway Creek to Lombard Street.
Campbell requested the ban so police could review safety concerns.
He said his officers have responded to reports of gunshots in the area only to find out that they came from hunters. He said incidents like that have diverted public safety resources and caused confusion.
"People will call in gunshots and we'll send officers out to respond, search the area, write a report and usually find nothing, that's tying up officers, it's trying up resources," said Campbell.
Campbell says there is another side to the public safety angle that's even more concerning, people ignoring the gunfire and not calling 911, just because they assume it's coming from duck hunters.
"There's a danger that someone may have actually been shot and public safety is not being notified because people have been desensitized to the shots being fired out here," Campbell said.
For people who live in the area, the sound of gunfire from those trying to bag a bird can be a problem.
"Sunrise, Fourth of July morning, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom. My bedroom window and condo face, ten feet from the water.
Right now, the ban is in effect until June 1, 2019.
DEEP said anyone caught hunting in the area could be arrested and charged with illegal hunting.
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