Fireworks-related infractions fall to 2 in Lacey

The number of fireworks-related tickets fell to two in Lacey this year, but Thurston County dispatchers still received more than 60 Lacey-related complaints on July 4 and more than 100 complaints starting in June.

That’s according to Lacey Police Department data, which show that officers wrote two tickets this year, four in 2013, one in 2012 and 10 in 2011.

Lacey has had a fireworks ban in place since 2007. Since then, the number of Lacey-related fireworks complaints received by 911 dispatchers has averaged about 66 on July 4.

Lacey police also track a wider period around July 4 that begins June 1 and ends July 5. During that period since 2007, complaints to 911 dispatchers have averaged about 116.

One reason the total number of complaints hasn’t come down is because of the transient nature of the city’s military population. Those who are rotating through Joint Base Lewis-McChord may not be familiar with the ban, Lacey Police Chief Dusty Pierpoint said. There also are others who are unfamiliar with the ban and those who don’t care, he said.

An infraction, which amounts to a $87 fine, typically is written when someone has been warned before or refuses to heed a police officer’s warning, Pierpoint said. The infraction also has to take place in the officer’s presence, he said.

“We can’t take enforcement if it’s not right in front of us,” Pierpoint said.