Realistic toy gun warnings for Christmas shoppers

Holmen PD offers suggestions

As many are completing their last minute Christmas shopping, local law enforcement has suggestions for those buying toy guns.

“Any type of toy gun you buy your kids, we want to make sure it’s very noticeable it’s a toy,” Officer Cody Spears of the village of Holmen Police Department said.

Spears said it’s important to make sure toy guns have an orange tip signifying they’re not real.

“If you had a BB-gun next to a regular gun, I really couldn’t tell,” La Crosse resident and shopper Patrick Callan said.

Out in the field, Spears has run into fake guns that look real, most recently just two weeks ago.

“As law enforcement, we always train that the gun is real if it appears to be real, because we don’t know,” Spears said. “Things happen so quickly out there, it’s hard to comprehend what you’re looking at.”

That’s why he said colorful toy guns are good, and the less authentic the toys look, the better. It’s also best to keep any toy guns at home.

“Keep them in the home. That’s best advice I can give,” Spears said. “When they get out in the street, into cars, that’s where problems are ran into.”

According to Wisconsin law, it is illegal carry or display any kind of object that can reasonably be perceived as an actual firearm in public.