JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - In July, the Jonesboro Police Department seized a BB gun from a Jonesboro woman after she allegedly pointed the muzzle in the direction of others during a verbal argument.
While that case has been closed, JPD had a message to share about the challenges of knowing what’s real from fake.
The BB gun was made of metal, had a working magazine and fully functional, police said.
But, guns like these, according to the department, can cause trouble differentiating in a moment’s notice.
“With those types of weapons, they are legal to own, to have. There’s nothing illegal about them. The problem that you run into is that upon immediate observation of one they are indistinguishable from a real firearm. It actually takes physical manipulation of that device to able to tell that it’s not actually a real firearm.” Jonesboro Police Department Sgt. Brian Davis said.
If you recall the tragic incident where 12-year-old Tamir Rice was shot and killed in 2014 by an officer after carrying a replica gun.
Sergeant Davis says when dealing with firearms, a moment of hesitation can lead to tragedy. So, for all untrained and even trained individuals, it can be concerning.
In terms of the law, he says BB guns and pellet guns are not applicable under the same laws as most firearms.
Davis added that the department can connect you with the resources you need to learn safe firearm skills.
He says to treat all firearms as they are real.