On blast: Mississippi mayor said he’s going public with faces of people illegally firing guns

Published 7:00 am Thursday, May 11, 2023

Mayor George Flaggs Jr. said he wants to end the practice of discharging firearms inside the city limits even if it means embarrassing the offenders by publishing their mug shots in the newspaper.

“There are absolutely too much and too many gunshots in this city,” he said. “We cannot grow this city with people afraid to step outside their houses.”

Flaggs’ comments followed his announcement at the start of the Vicksburg Board of Mayor and Aldermen’s Wednesday meeting that the board was going to address “a shooting in Vicksburg” during its executive session but did not identify the location of the incident. The board took no action during the executive session, tabling it until its meeting Monday.

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The board in March 2018 amended the city’s code of ordinances to impose a mandatory 30-day jail sentence and a $500 fine for people arrested for discharging a firearm in the city limits. In October 2021, Flaggs said he wanted people out on bond for firearms violations wearing ankle bracelets. However, the mayor said neither move has discouraged people from discharging their weapons inside the city and he’s ready to try something else.

“I don’t know whether it’s legal or not, I don’t know if it’s constitutional or not but I’ve talked to The Vicksburg Post and we’re going to start slapping every picture of everybody if they get arrested or convicted for shooting a gun in our city,” he said. “Unless this board gets in my way, I intend to expose some people. I want the people in the city to know who’s in the community and shooting these guns.

“We don’t need this; Vicksburg is better than this.”

The mayor’s latest complaint about firearms discharged in the city comes in the wake of an altercation just before midnight Friday at Jacques’ nightclub, 1320 Levee St., in which four security guards were wounded trying to break up a fight. No charges have been filed at this time.