Minneapolis approves restrictions on fake gunsby Greta Cunningham, Minnesota Public Radio
Minneapolis — The Minneapolis City Council has voted to restrict replica guns. The ordinance sponsored by Councilmember Don Samuels says people can't carry replica guns and air guns, or have them in their cars, except under certain conditions.
Samuels says so far this year, Minneapolis police have confiscated 129 fake guns used during crimes. He says replica guns are manufactured to look exactly like real guns.
Under the ordinance, the punishment for carrying a fake gun would increase.
"It will basically be a replica of the penalty for having a real gun," said Samuels. "So whatever the penalty is -- if you rob a bank with a fake gun you'll be charged with robbing a bank as with a real gun. If you brandish it in the air -- a fake gun -- you'll be charged and have the penalty of brandishing a real gun."
Samuels says toy manufacturers are now making toy guns out of colorful plastic, and often paint the tip of the gun bright orange so police will know it's a fake weapon.
Earlier this year, the St. Paul City Council approved a ban on the public display of real-looking replica guns.