Two men arrested for shooting down Central Fresno power lines on NYE

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New Year gunfire downs power lines. A Fresno man stepped right onto the lines without ever seeing them. He told Action News about those frightening moments. (KFSN)

The downed lines also cut power in Central Fresno for about 3,000 utility customers.
New Year gunfire downs power lines. A Fresno man stepped right onto the lines without ever seeing them. He told Action News about those frightening moments.

Investigators say two men confessed to firing into the air early Thursday morning. The shots severed several power lines. Fortunately for the man who unknowingly stepped into them, they were not live.

The downed lines also cut power in Central Fresno for about 3,000 utility customers.

"That's scary, because they were not arching, there was no warning," said Nathan Johnson. "There were no cones. It was dangerous."

Johnson was walking home from a New Year's Eve party in the dark when he was stopped in his tracks. "It felt like my feet were being held down," he said. "And when I looked down I noticed that they were trapped under a steel cable."

The cables Nathan would soon learn were power lines. Firefighters across the street from him warned of the potentially life-threatening danger he just walked into.

Fresno police say two men, 26-year-old David Lay and 19-year-old Tommy San admitted to shooting guns into the air just after midnight.

"Neither of the individuals outright admitted that they shot the power lines or intended to shoot the power lines," said Sgt. Paul Cervantes. "Suffice it to say based on our investigation it was very apparent that they were responsible for shooting the power lines."

The men were arrested at their apartment complex nearby. Police confiscated several weapons; most they say were legally owned but taken because they were illegally fired.

Sgt. Paul Cervantes says san is connected to a case Action News reported on Monday, where San's 16-year-old family friend was arrested after posting a picture of Facebook from his class at Sunnyside High School.

What looks like a gun in his pocket was actually a knife. Gang officers later found the 16-year-old with a shotgun at his home that they say San gave the teen.

"He was also arrested for furnishing a weapon to a minor, as well as the negligent storage of a fire arm," Sgt. Cervantes said. "So they're facing a whole host of weapons violations."

Johnson is angry about his run-in, for him and his neighbors. "Some people rely on that power to stay alive," he said. "It's upsetting."

Officers are pushing forward with charges against the two men and working to see they will be held financially responsible for the costly electrical repairs.



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