DENVER — Denver police received 487 phone calls over the weekend related to an increase in the size and number of firework displays being ignited across the city.
"This was a professional-grade show with a professional rig, with people who very much knew what they were doing," said Colin McIntosh, who recorded an incident taking place just feet from his neighbor's balcony in the Ballpark neighborhood. The only problem, he explained, is "no-one enjoyed it."
Denverites across the city have described similar instances; massive firework displays exploding late into the night.
"You can tolerate it during normal hours," said Jacob Mandell, who lives just outside the city in the Westwood neighborhood. "Then at 2, 3, 4 in the morning, you are just wondering, 'what is the point of doing this?' Nobody is awake and wanting to hear this."
And the displays Mandell witnessed "are absolutely massive. Like Disney World fireworks."
"I have not seen anything like it ever," he said. "The two questions that most of the people I have talked to asked is where they get them, and how they are getting so many of them."
Mandell owns a dog with his roommates that becomes agitated at the sound of fireworks.
"He is just constantly barking, constantly on edge at 1 or 2 in the morning," he said. "Going until 4 in the morning is inexcusable no matter what day of the week it is."
Police statistics paint a similar picture. According to data released by DPD, over the weekend the department received 487 calls related to firework disturbances across the city. Over the same dates last year, there were only 13.
Want to report the illegal possession or use fireworks in #Denver? Call 720-913-2059. Please remain available for police contact -- officers need a signature from the complainant in order to issue a citation. pic.twitter.com/wljP49PkQV— Denver Police Dept. (@DenverPolice) June 22, 2020
"Lighting off thousands of dollars worth of fireworks within 50 feet of a residential building with hundreds of people in it seems pretty dangerous," said McIntosh. "It was very unsettling for a lot of people. A lot of people were sleeping."
Smaller fireworks have been commonplace recently with 8 p.m. howling, George Floyd protests, and Juneteenth celebrations taking place. However, residents say the fireworks on display over the weekend are much larger and more dangerous.
"It went from celebrating with the community with the protests and bringing people together. Denver has made a lot of progress with the changes and everything," said Mandell. But, he says when it comes to the massive displays constantly barraging his neighborhood, "nobody knows what they are trying to accomplish."