PHILADELPHIA (WTXF) - Residents in Fox Chase are upset after video shows two young men shooting off fireworks towards homes.
Ed Matuszewski was doing yard work out front of his home on the 7500 block of Lawndale Street Monday afternoon when he came across a fireworks wrapper.
He had heard the commotion just after midnight and figured it was the usual July 4th fun and games. FOX 29's Bruce Gordon showed him the video proof.
“It looked like they are aiming at homes,” said Matuszewski . “Like they’re trying to make it go through some window.”
Home security camera footage shows two young men— likely teens— walking down Lawndale, randomly firing Roman candles into the air and toward homes. Just around the corner, Gordon found an empty Roman candle package that included the warning that the product “shoots flaming balls.”
Rob Starr lives on Lawndale. He also heard the fireworks.
“I think they’re idiots,” he told Gordon. “They’re idiots, doing it at peoples houses and stuff. That’s not right.”
Pennsylvania’s fireworks laws were loosened this year, but don’t let that mislead you. Among the prohibitions still in effect: using consumer fireworks on public or private property without the express permission of the owner and using consumer fireworks within 150 feet of an occupied structure— like someone’s home. In Philadelphia, using anything stronger than a sparkler has long been against the law and still is.
And if damage or injury results?
"You could find yourself in violation of our crimes code,” said Captain Sekou Kinebrew. “Like causing or risking a catastrophe, recklessly endangering another person, endangering the welfare of a child— something like that— depending on the consequences of using the fireworks.”
Neighbors on Lawndale want the kids on the video on notice: their little show was not appreciated.
While the teens have not yet been identified, the security camera footage is reasonably clear. Bottom line, say the authorities, leave fireworks to the pros. Not only could you damage your neighbor’s property, you could get hurt yourself. Ed Matuszewski knows that all too well.
“My cousin, he lost his eye when he was younger, shooting off fireworks.”