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Ripon Police detain teens using fireworks
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Fireworks bursting above a Ripon elementary school Monday ended with police detaining three teens they found running across the playground and into the dark of night.

It was about 7 p.m. when a Ripon Police dispatcher received several 911 calls that the aerial fireworks were being launched at the Ripona Elementary School at the eastern end of Oregon Street and east of the Ripon cemetery.  Officers had also received additional eye witness confirmation of the illegal launches from Ripon Fire Department personnel, according to police spokesman Lt. Steve Merchant. 

Merchant said the department had received multiple reports of fireworks or explosions in the same area over the preceding two weeks.  When officers arrived on the scene they reported seeing three suspects running through the dark and across the school playground. Quickly detained they were found allegedly to be in possession of alcohol and mortars reportedly believed to have been used to fire off the aerial fireworks.

Corey Kindja Goodwin, 19, of Ripon was taken into custody and later released on a misdemeanor citation for discharging the illegal fireworks and for possession of alcohol as well as for contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Zachary Michael Horwood, 18, of Ripon was also taken into custody and released on a misdemeanor citation for alcohol possession and for contributing to the delinquency of a minor.  A female juvenile was located on the school grounds with the suspects and released to her parents without charges.

Merchant praised the local citizens who provided valuable information in the case.  He noted that in addition to being an explosive fire hazard, illegal aerial fireworks are also responsible for a number of disturbance calls each year.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reported eight deaths and 7,400 injuries in 2013.  They gleaned reports from hospital emergency rooms and death certificate files.