Eight police officers were on the beach dispersing a large, late-night crowd Wednesday when sounds of shots being fired led to the confiscation of two handguns, a foot chase through backyards and three arrests, Long Beach police said.
As a group of about 500 young people began to walk and drive off City Beach, at the 11 p.m. closing time, one officer heard gunshots coming from about two blocks away, police said. That was quickly followed by a 911 call about gunshots, police said.
Police ran to Edwards Boulevard and Penn Street, where a Camaro caught their attention, said Lt. Eric Cregeen, a police spokesman: "A strong odor of marijuana was emanating from the car. They zeroed in on that car and sure enough, there was a gun sitting on the floor of the backseat of the car."
In the car were Tylek Allen, 19, who was charged with criminal possession of a weapon, and Dereck Pickney, 21, who was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana, a violation.
Then one officer, Joseph Wiemann, shouted that he was running after someone seen leaving the area where the shots had been heard, Cregeen said.
That suspect jumped over a fence, and officers set up a perimeter search area and found him in the rear yard of a home on Monroe Boulevard, police said.
"We found him hiding in the bushes on the side of the house," Cregeen said. "After they pick him up, they start searching the yard and they come up with a second gun."
Kareem Edney, 22, was charged with two counts of criminal trespass.
"It was great police work," Cregeen said. "These guys zeroed in on the bad guys out of a crowd of 500-plus people and were able to make three arrests and take two guns off the street."
Allen, of 7 Wilburn Lane in Roosevelt, was arraigned Thursday and held on bail of $2,500 cash or $5,000 bond. Edney, of 103 Rutland Road in Freeport, was arraigned Thursday and released on bail of $1,000 cash or $2,000 bond. Pickney, of 108 Pennsylvania Ave. in Roosevelt, was released Thursday and ordered to appear in court on a later date.