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Old August 9th, 2006, 19:51   #1
hymnforthewretched's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Alberta
MORE bad publicity for airsoft

hey heres an aticle in the Grande Prairie new paper i found. This was from last week i believe ( august 1st - 6th 2006)

makes me disapointed, as it probably will you too.

Fake guns? It's still armed robbery

There's nothing cool about carrying a fake weapon.

That's the message Grande Prairie RCMP are putting out after last week's conviction of a local youth who brought a toy gun onto the GP Composite high school campus last fall.

Police are worried that the incident is part of a trend or fad of carrying fake guns which, over the years, have started to look more and more like the real thing.

Gone are the days when a toy gun was simply small and plastic and obviously not real.

"When they first came out they were a clear plastic so you could tell they were a toy, then it moved to the more realistic looking gun but they had a red tip on the barrel of the gun to indicate it wasn't the real thing," said Const. Scott Hagarty, spokesman for Grande Prairie RCMP. "Now people are taking the tips off.'

He pointed out that the only way someone could tell them apart is by the little Made in Japan stamp on the gun.

"You walk into a Mac's store and point that at someone, it's an armed robbery."

Hagarty said the RCMP wants to get rid of the "cool factor" for youths by reassuring them these fake guns will have real consequences in certain situations.

"If people are out there thinking 'nothing will happen if I get caught with this,' that's not the case," he said.

According to the Firearms Act and the Criminal Code, replica firearms - except for replicas of antique firearms - are classified as prohibited devices.

The Canada Firearms Centre notes, as a general rule, guns made out of clear plastic and those that are significantly smaller than the real version are not classified as replicas.

Hagarty said the RCMP has run into a number of kids who are carrying these replica firearms, thinking they are toys, but this causes problems for the public.

"When someone sees that on someone, they won't know it's not real because they look so identical."

While Hagarty said he understands parent might want to buy the replicas for their children, he added safety is the only way a tragic situation can be averted.

"If you do buy them be very strict about how they are used."

Last week, two local youths appeared in Grande Prairie provincial court on charges stemming from an incident at Grande Prairie Composite high school on Nov. 9.

The school was locked down that day after a staff member saw a male youth with what appeared to be a handgun on the school's property.

Between 15 to 20 police officers and a police dog blockaded the school and two young offenders were eventually arrested and a replica handgun was seized.

The co-accused males, now ages 18 and 17, were facing charges of possession of a weapon dangerous to the public peace and mischief. Neither can be named under the Youth Criminal Justice Act.

In court Aug. 1, the 17-year-old appeared first and changed his plea from not guilty to guilty and a pre-sentence report is going to be submitted to the court on Sept. 18.

As part of the agreement, Crown prosecutor Morris Golden withdrew the mischief charge.

The 18-year-old, who was 17 at the time of the alleged offence had his trial on Aug. 1-2 and six witnesses were called to recount what happened on the day in question.

Throughout his testimony he asserted that he viewed the gun as a toy and was using it to make friends as he had only been in the school for four days prior to the incident.

The 18-year-old was found not guilty on the weapons charge but convicted of mischief and sentenced to 12 months of probation, including the condition that he take a firearm training program.
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