Man Fined $1000 For Unlawful Fireworks Use

December 15, 2014

Appearing in Magistrates Court this morning [Dec 15], a 51-year-old guest worker pleaded guilty to unlawfully using fireworks.

Brian Lemmon — who just arrived on the island — pleaded guilty to two counts of unlawfully using fireworks in St Georges on 11th and 12th December 2014. Mr Lemmon admitted to setting off an aerial rocket on each night, which, when it exploded in mid-air, resulted in his neighbours reporting the sound as ‘gunshots’.

Accepting that Mr Lemmon had turned himself in to police and had been fully cooperative, but citing the incidence of, and gravity attached to, reports of gunshots; Magistrate Khamisi Tokunbo said that he would levy the maximum fine permitted — $500 for each offence.

The Court heard that Mr Lemmon was apprised of the situation after his next door neighbour used a tablet to show him a news report of ‘gunshots’ being heard in St Georges.

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Comments (29)

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  1. PBanks says:

    I’m a bit curious to know how he obtained them, frankly. Glad that this case was at least dealt with quickly.

  2. bermy onion says:

    or brought them in?

  3. Educated says:

    What a Lemmon.

    • Expat says:

      Lemmon?? Yes maybe … but $1000!!! Only because he is an expat … apparently his crime (for which he turned himself in) was worse than all of the the below:

      1) $800 – Feb 14/13 43 yr old Bermudian is drunk and crashes into another car
      2) $800 – Feb 12/13 importing 6 grams of weed into bermuda
      3) $600 – July 23/12 – Bermudian using threatening words and offering threatening behavior to police
      4) $800 – Apr 2/13 – Bermudian being in care and control of a motor vehicle whilst impaired by alcohol
      5) $500 – June 24/14 – Bermudian found with 0.8g of cocaine
      6) $1,200 – August 16/12 – Bermudian HIT AND RUN
      7) $500 – October 7/14 – Bermudian doing a high speed chase in excess of 100kph

      Fireworks must be a worse crime than all of the above … well, if you are an expat that is…

      • Read it again says:

        Actually it the same fine as #5 and 7. read it closely “two counts of unlawfully using fireworks in St Georges on 11th and 12th December 2014″ $500 for each Offence. Has nothing to do with him being an expat.

      • Observer says:

        Unreal, but true! Well said!!!

      • Stunned... says:

        Expat – sorry you feel that Lemmon was singled out because he was an expat. He was probably singled out because he was simply ignorant of the law, not on one occasion but two. Given the number of fire-arm incidents, the police were probably not amused by the false alarm.

        Having said that, Mr. Lemmon did the right thing by voluntarily turning himself in.

  4. wondering says:

    we want to know the answer to the 50 million Euro question:

    How did he get access to the fireworks but if there are illegal drugs, firearms, miscellaneous contraband – I wonder what the answer is?

  5. hmmm says:

    How do you unlawfully let off fireworks?
    Do you need a licence, permit?

    What was his reasoning for letting off the fireworks?
    Where did he get them from?

    • Sky Pilot says:

      Learn to read before you run your mouth!

      • hmmm says:

        Less of your mouth please. Show me where it answers my questions !!!!!!!

      • Not a pilot, but nevertheless says:

        Who is running their mouth? Those are four straight-forward questions and I believe he or she has the right to ask them without fear of some sort of snide comments in return.

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      1: You light them
      2: Not if you don’t know & assume the laws are much the same here as anywhere else
      3: Who cares? Relevance.
      4: What does it matter? He bought them.

  6. Truth is killin' me... says:

    HM Customs…SLACK…can’t stop guns OR fireworks for that matter!!

  7. Cardine Alice says:

    Wow. An overreaction surely. Why don’t local neighbours turn in the guys firing guns than waste court and police time on a fireworks display. A thousand dollars. That, at most is a caution and discharge.

    • Raw Onion says:

      If you take into account the police man hours taken up by investigating this situation, $1000 fine is nothing. The came way person’s reported the ‘gunshots’ which turned out to be fireworks, persons report real gunshots the same way. This doesn’t warrant a caution and discharge, a clear message needs to be sent to person who want to set off ILLEGAL fireworks.

      • Cardine Alice says:

        The point is the police overeacted. Fireworks are normal in many parts of the world and a cultural event.! Should have been a quite word advising him that, contrary to the law elsewhere, it is an offence to use fireworks here. (something as a lawyer I did not know) He does not appear to have been creating a nuisance. Or do you wish to let the world know that the gun violence situation in Bermuda is so bad that you can’t celebrate an occasion with some fireworks because your neighbours will report gunfire to the police? Wow. You normall hear gunfire and think, o only fireworks. That is normal.

        • Toodle-oo says:

          If as a lawyer you didn’t know that fireworks are illegal here what else are you unaware of ? Bermuda IS another world after all .
          Just because you think they’re a norm in countries overseas doesn’t mean that one can automatically assume they’re allowed here. Guns are legal in the US , what about here ? Cultural norms ?

          Do you know why fireworks were outlawed here in the 60′s ?
          Mind you , I also think that a smaller fine and caution would have been appropriate but the over-riding question remains as to how he got them in his possession .

          Thanks to the little bit of knowledge imparted here on the subject more people should now know that they’re illegal and one must have a permit to have them .

        • Underwhatrocksoyoureside? says:

          So then, ignorance of the law is now a valid excuse?

          • JUNK YARD DOG says:

            So what this about transparency ? when laws get passed at one minute past midnight.

        • Watcher says:

          Overreacted?? Perhaps you can tell us why you think it’s okay for anyone to be setting off fireworks at 12:45am? Even if it wasn’t illegal, how considerate of his brand new neighbors is that? Also, I too would like to know where he got them. Did he bring them with him so he could celebrate his arrival in Bermuda with a bang? Isn’t it illegal everywhere to transport fireworks in your personal luggage on a plane? I hope the police “react” some more and check this guy out.

  8. Jim bob says:

    He should have known better. What a lemmon!

  9. Toodle-oo says:

    I concur with the interest in how they came to be in his possession .
    The only people currently allowed to have fireworks have to hold a special license , and they sure aren’t about to be handing any of their fireworks out to strangers , or anyone .

    If he’s only been here for a short time , did he bring them when he came ?
    If that’s the case he better have arrived on a boat because it’s highly illegal to have fireworks on a commercial airliner , no matter where they’re stashed.

  10. Guess Who says:

    The HM Customs declaration form to which he should have signed upon arrival.

    #12. I am (We are) bringing fireworks, firearms, ammunition,
    explosives or weapons of any kind (e.g. knife, stun gun, sling
    shot, mace, pepper spray, etc.). Y or N

    What did he tick?
    Ha!

  11. Zorro says:

    The big question is how on earth did he manage to get them here?
    The ball has been dropped all along his travels or maybe in some form of shipping.
    Its illegal on commercial flights….so if he flew in with it, how did it escape travel security/scanning etc?
    It also got by customs in BDA either by air travel or by shipping.
    Maybe he did arrive via ship..?

  12. JUNK YARD DOG says:

    The firework law came into being when some school children tossed a match in the the firework bin at the Golden Gate 5 & 10 store on Reid St. Bermuda has more laws than the state pen. Ha !

  13. JUNK YARD DOG says:

    Fireworks, Just think, that they could be left overs from a hotel celebration show.

  14. Impressive says:

    He says he didn’t know they where illegal as he didnt see any signs,, Mercy,, what next.. Where should the signs be placed??? Just wondering.. Maybe they should have road signs that say “Please Use Common Sense”.. The courts would be overflowing.

  15. are you 12 says:

    What man hours? He turned himself in. Y’all say anything on her..each and every1 of are en here day in and day out giving opinions that don’t make any sense.