An Iowa town is currently reviewing a measure that would outlaw both the open and concealed carry of toy guns in public, local media reports.
Due to the fact that toy guns, airsoft guns, BB/pellet guns, paintball guns, replica guns, etc., can sometimes resemble the real thing, city council members want owners of these items to keep them locked away in cases when they are not being used.
“It’s a proposal to conceal these guns in a proper case,” explained Burlington Police Chief Doug Beaird. “They make those cases at all the department stores and whether you’re walking or in a vehicle, you would be expected to case these guns.”
According to the Burlington Police Department, there were 26 reported cases of individuals toting guns that turned out to be toys in 2013, up from 19 reported cases the previous year.
“The idea was, if the problem continues, it’s gonna be a matter of time until we actually end up with a confrontation with somebody that has a gun, that’s maybe not real,” continued Beaird. “We can’t make those kind of decisions that fast.”
It appears that Mayor Shane McCampbell is on board with the proposal.
“It’s not saying that nobody can have one,” said McCampbell. “It’s saying that they need to be in a proper carrying bag, so that you’re not running around with a BB gun that may or may not look real.”
The city council approved the measure on Monday during a preliminary hearing. The ordinance will likely go before the city council two more times before its fate is decided.