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Community upset with teens who launched fireworks at Dearborn police officers

Posted at 5:56 PM, Jul 05, 2024

DEARBORN, Mich. (WXYZ) — Fourth of July fireworks were launched at officers, according to the Dearborn Police Department.

The department shared dash camera video with me that shows the dangerous moment.

It happened Thursday around 11:45 p.m. The fireworks appear to be launched toward two officers, who were not seen in the video and only heard.

"Watch out! Watch out!" officers yelled in the video.

Watch more of the incident in the video below:

Video shows Dearborn officers targeted with fireworks

"Thankfully, the officers were able to take cover and get inside their patrol vehicle very quickly. And again as you saw on the video, that firework was a very large firework. It jarred the patrol car, causing damage to the patrol car, and our officers sustained some minor injuries as well," said Cpl. Dan Bartok with the Dearborn Police Department.

Another cellphone video shows officers chasing after the suspects on foot.

Bartock says the patrol car, a Ford F-150 truck, is undergoing repairs.

"We are seeing juveniles and minors utilizing these fireworks, and their parents and guardians are not keeping an eye on their children and making sure they are following the law," Bartock said.

Thursday night alone, police responded to over 200 calls — most of them were related to fireworks violations. Bartock says that's over twice the normal load on an average day.

Cpl. Dan Bartok with the Dearborn Police Department

"You know, responding to that many runs in such a short time is overwhelming for any law enforcement agency. Again, we ask the public to take personal responsibility and use the fireworks legally, appropriately and safely," Bartock said.

As the investigation continues, no arrests have been made in this case. However, during the last Fourth of July holiday, a similar incident took place and in that case, Bartock says the investigation revealed that officers were targeted.

"How many of these incidents have happened over the years?" I asked.

"Thankfully, it's very rare. This does not happen often in the city of Dearborn," Bartock said.

Police are now asking for the community's help with identifying the suspects. Meanwhile, people are certainly not happy with the actions of some.

"It's uncalled for. I don't care if it's the police or anybody," said Brain Tillman, a lifelong Dearborn resident.

"It's sad for the community 'cause what if we didn't have those guys out there? Maybe they would have put it under my car or your car," said Maureen Newsome, who frequently shops in Dearborn.

"Yeah, anything that can do that kind of damage, they should definitely have regulations," said Monica Ramirez, a Dearborn resident.

"What kind of regulations would you like to see implemented?" asked Javed.

"At least make them have to pay for their actions if nothing else. Find out who did it, give them community service, fine them something," Tillman said.

"The last several nights, we have seen quite a few very large fireworks used throughout our neighborhoods. I think it would be reasonable to say some regulations, some oversight on how and when these fireworks can be used might be a good idea," Bartock said.

Now, fireworks are allowed Friday until 11:45 p.m., and that's why Dearborn police are deploying extra resources to ensure the community's safety. Also, police are reminding people that minors are not allowed to use fireworks, and their use shouldn't result in any property damage or harm to people including first responders.

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