Group warns speeders of paintball gun
Posted August 17, 2009 4:32 p.m. EDT
Updated August 17, 2009 6:36 p.m. EDT
Durham, N.C. — A group of Durham residents are taking aim at speeders with the threat of a paintball gun.
The group, Angry Neighbors With Paintball Guns, says it is posting signs at strategic locations throughout the city, warning motorists to slow down or risk being shot at with a paintball gun.
"We are a small group of neighbors who have reached the limits of our patience with the city's inability -- some might say unwillingness -- to address the issue," the group wrote in an e-mail Monday to WRAL News.
It would not say if the signs were to serve only as an attention-grabber or if it plans to shoot paintballs at vehicles.
“Who we are isn't important," a second e-mail stated. "What is important is that the City of Durham realize [sic] that this is a problem that needs to be solved. Stay tuned for further developments.”
The group says it is also disappointed that the city has stopped funding its PACE Car program, which was designed to help prevent speeding. Kammie Michael, a Durham police spokeswoman, said budget and staffing constraints forced the dissolution of the program.
The department, however, has increased patrols in the area recently, Michael said and residents have complimented the police department on its response.
"The Durham Police Department enforces traffic laws, and we plan to continue to be responsive to traffic concerns from residents throughout the city," she said.
Michael said it is a crime to shoot a paintball at a vehicle and that the signs could be a distraction for some drivers and make the problem worse.
Some residents who live near the intersection of Markham and Glendale avenues, where a sign was posted Monday morning, said they like the signs because it brings attention to the speeding problem.
"I think it's a very good sign, and it shows there is some initiative in our neighborhood," resident Angelo Abbate said.
"I thought it was good fun," resident Rusty Haynes said. "I'm not sure anybody will actually get plugged with a paint pellet, but we'll see."