Police in San Leandro, California, announced they confiscated two AK-pattern rifles during a drug raid that were built with orange-tipped muzzles to make them look like toy or airsoft rifles.
Three other rifles were confiscated from the house along with $45,000 in cash. The house was being used as an illegal marijuana farm.
Three men were arrested in the raid.
Lt. Robert McManus confirmed that the rifles were authentic and not toys.
“The officer is going to be forced to shoot to protect their own life or to protect someone else, regardless if it has the plastic tip on it,” McManus said, implying his department treats all potential firearms as guns no matter how they are painted.
This follows on the heels of a bill proposed by state Sen. Noreen Evans that would regulate toy guns and require them to have paint schemes to differentiate between real and toy guns.
The bill was proposed after shooting death Andy Lopez, 13, in October last year. Lopez was shot and killed by a Erick Gelhaus, a Sonoma County sheriff’s deputy.
If what McManus says is true, this bill will not change how police approach potentially-armed standoffs.
The bill currently sits on Governor Jerry Brown’s desk.