SHERWOOD, Ark. (KTHV) -- The Sherwood Police Department is seeing a rising trend locally and nationally where people are taking the orange tip off toy or airsoft-style guns to make them seem real. They said this can be very dangerous for the public and police.
The department wants people, especially kids, to remember that fake guns can have real life consequences if used improperly.
Sergeant Keith Wilson claimed that if you point a gun the officer doesn't have time to determine whether or not it's a toy gun.
“Even with all the training we have it's hard to tell and an officer is not going to sit there if their life is in danger and take a timeout to determine whether a gun is fake or not,” he said.
Wilson also said it's the parents' responsibility to educate their children on gun safety and the potential risk of misusing a toy gun.
Brandon Butler, Owner and Chief Instructor of Tactical Rescue Services, said the orange tip is important for any airsoft gun, BB gun, or toy gun to have.
“They're required by federal law to be sold with an orange tip on them," he said. "Unfortunately, a lot of people take those orange tips off which means they can be easily confused with a real firearm.”
Butler said you need to leave the tip on your gun and be sure to safely transport it. He said those two easy simple steps can help you avoid conflict with the public and police.
“They need to keep the guns in bags, they need to transport them in the backs of their vehicles and not get out of their cars with them,” he said.
It's not against the law to take the orange tip off of a BB gun or airsoft gun after you buy it. However, experts and law enforcement ask you to leave it on because it's safer for the public, the police department, and yourself.