The following was posted to the South Orange Police Department's Facebook page on October 31.
Parents, talk to your kids about making smart choices!
One of the challenges for public safety on Halloween is trying to distinguish, among the masses, who is out for trick or treat...or who is out causing trouble. Events that draw crowds also draw those looking to commit crimes, tonight we responded to disturbances, vehicle burglaries and calls of people pushing juveniles down to take their candy.
While canvassing dark neighborhoods, our officers observed juveniles brandishing these Airsoft/BB guns. They were not dressed in army costumes, in fact they wore nothing but jeans and dark hooded sweatshirts. The orange tips, which serve to help us better identify real from fake had been painted over or burned off.
This is how tragedy happens.
In NJ, to possess a rifle BB gun you must have a firearms ID card and be at least 18. A BB handgun is considered a firearm and requires a purchase permit and an age of 21 years.
Please, if your child owns an air soft gun, ensure they haven’t painted the tip and talk to them about making smart choices when out and about.
These “toys” look real in the day time, under low light conditions, presenting them under certain situations can be disastrous.