Teen arrested after shooting into the sand at Pismo Beach

August 2, 2021

Joel Vela


An allegedly intoxicated teen fired a gun into the sand at Pismo Beach on Sunday, according to the city’s police department.

Joel Vela, 18, of Hanford was arguing with a woman on the beach at about 11 a.m. The woman then walked away heading northbound.

Vela followed her and fired several rounds into the sand to get her attention, according to the Pismo Beach Police Department. No one suffered any injuries, though many people on the beach wear frightened.

Officers arrived and arrested Vela. Police booked Vela in San Luis Obispo County Jail on charges of discharge of a firearm with gross negligence, possession of an undetectable firearm, possession of a concealed firearm in a vehicle and public intoxication.

Vela remains in custody with his bail set at $20,000.


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Too bad we don’t issue more concealed carry permits in this state, eh?


Was that an attempt at jocularity, or are you simply that misinformed about this subject? smh.


Just triggering fragile little snowflakes like you and it looks like it worked! ;)


There is, factually, no such thing as an “undetectable gun”.


Tell that to Ronald Reagan, who passed the undetectable firearms act in 1988


Once more, there’s no such thing as an “undetectable gun.” The ammo alone would give them away.


Are you trying to be funny? Because you are hilarious!

The act only required that firearms parts must resemble firearms parts, that could be identified as firearms parts in X-ray.

You thought it meant “invisible” guns, didn’t you? Or totally plastic to defeat metal detectors? Or ceramic?

All you did with your snarky reply, was to prove my statement is 100% correct.


If you can read, then you know what they meant by “undetectable”. The United States Undetectable Firearms Act of 1988 (18 U.S.C. § 922(p)) makes it illegal to manufacture, import, sell, ship, deliver, possess, transfer, or receive any firearm that is not as detectable by walk-through metal detection as a security exemplar containing 3.7 oz (105 g) of steel, or any firearm with major components that do not generate an accurate image before standard airport imaging technology.

That is one of the statutes that this individual was charged with.

Your comment is useless. Are you saying you think the name of the law sucks? Or are you saying people should be allowed to own firearms that don’t comply with it? Or do you think all gun laws suck? Or are you just angry at the world?


Can we just call it like it is and say that a lot of people from the valley are a mess? Sure they bring some money for tourism but at what cost to our towns?


Wow…..drunk in public at 11:00am at 18 years old. And he’s from Hanford.

What in the hell is going on here? I almost wish we could close our beaches to locals only, and you’d have to live in certain zip codes (Central Coast only) to enjoy them. Maybe that would keep some of the riff raff out. I’ve not heard of a local resident doing any of this type nonsense. I guess that’s why we all know not to go to the beaches on Friday/Saturday/Sunday. Steer clear and leave it to the out-of-towners.


For most locals, those are the days they aren’t working and could enjoy the beach. It kind of sucks how the cost of living here is so inflated yet if we wanna go to Pismo on a Saturday, it’s filled with Fresno/Bakersfield license plate frames who act like total… well, your negative word of choice.


Coastal elitism,

Probably “smelly Walmart shoppers…”

Kevin Rice

And Fresno could lock you out of Yosemite, right?


No, because Yosemite is a National Park, not under the governing auspices of a municipality.

Neither are the dunes, but the state most certainly can set restrictions.


That might have been effective in years past. Now plenty of chuckle-heads make their home on the Central Coast.


Many feel the same about the Oceano dunes. It’s so great to have, so great for the 5 Cities economy, so great to take kids and family out there and explore the dunes and that aspect of nature…but the weekend is as you say, “riff raff” and is a completely different experience. Anyway- sorry for the tangent!