“Township trustees Tuesday adopted on second reading a new ordinance tightening rules and giving local police and prosecutors broader powers to strike back against law-breakers who misuse replicas or facsimiles of handguns, shotguns, machine guns, rocket launchers and other toy weapons,” hometownlife.com reports. Hold on. Canton, Michigan’s town fathers have passed an ordinance (so to speak) against toy rocket launchers? “Canton has joined other communities in firing back against the misuse of fake guns, which Public Safety Director Patrick Nemecek said have been used to harass people most commonly in traffic altercations — increasing the chances of serious accidents.” So if you cut someone off in Canton they threaten you with a rocket launcher? “An offender who uses a fake gun to frighten or threaten someone could potentially land in jail for 90 days and face a $500 fine.” That’ll learn ’em!

7 Responses to Canton Kids with Toy Guns [Not Shown] Face 90 Days in Jail

  1. Oh. When I saw the headline, I assumed it meant Canton, China.

    When I was a kid, toy guns WERE for harrassing other kids. And they would run inside and get their toy bow and arrow and harrass you back. If only they had toy rocket launchers when I was a kid…that would trump all.

  2. “… the ordinance is intended to protect the public and law enforcement — and it is not meant to punish “the 5-year-old in the back of Mom’s minivan playing with a toy gun.”

    Nationwide, I think there have been some cases of the police and private citizens responding with real gun fire when they had a replica or even a toy gun pointed at them. Owners of replica guns should not be idiots pointing a fake gun at anyone. If a CC gun owner was having some punks point what looks like a real gun at their family from a car that person might draw and fire. Perhaps the shot would hot the punk with the replica and perhaps it would miss and hit an innocent person.

  3. I find this amusing because Canton, is about a 15 minute drive from where I live and folks commute to the UofM, or to the local auto industry facilities (Visteon/Ford/GM Powertrain). So there is a certain bit of ‘hoity toity’ type folks who’d be a bit ‘put-off’ if you so much as looked at ’em funny. It’s a shame that the township folks find it necessary to deal with this sort of thing. I’ll speak with the township connection in the middle of this week see if he can give me a bit further insight into the situation and waste of time.

  4. I gotta admit, this sounds totally reasonable. There are laws all over the country that treat facsimile weapons used in the commission of a crime (threatening, brandishing, bank robbery) as if they were real weapons. There is a very real public threat if an idiot uses an airsoft gun in a road rage incident and gets shot by police or the person s/he was threatening.

  5. Hey, hey…news from the hometown makes TTAG. Having my best man serving in the Canton PD, there have been plenty of incidents that I have heard where kids at night were walking around with toy guns threatening others. There was also a case where the police actually drew on two kids loitering around a party store with toy guns and when confronted the kids froze, one of them with fake gun pointed in the direction of law enforcement, not dropping his toy gun. Thankfully, a good no shoot decision by police, but the point is that there are plenty of kids running around doing stupid things at night.

    I don’t know if the ordinance passed is really necessary, per se, but I suppose it gives an out to police to charge the offender with a misdemeanor and not felony assault.

  6. I have no idea if this is what they had in mind, but I think the rocket launcher thing they may be talking about would be the kind of toy rockets made by Estes, that I had when I was a kid. For those not familiar, the kits generally consisted of a balsa nosecone, balsa fins, cardboard tube, some kind of device to allow it to fall back to the ground (usually a parachute) and a solid-propellent “engine.” You’d build the thing and paint ‘er up, with a small section of drinking straw glued to the side of the fuselage. Your launch pad was a long wire (about the diameter of a wire hanger) on a stick. They sold a gadget that had some zip cord, a couple of alligator battery clips, a button with a key, and a way to connect it to a ignition wire. Shove the ignition wire in a hole in the bottom of the rocket engine, connect the wires to a car battery, press the ignition button, and FWOOOOSH! Instant rocket launch.

    I never had an accident with a toy rocket, but I lost a buttload of ’em in trees around the open field where I launched. But I can see where, if someone decided to launch them in a direction other than straight up, they could be kinda scary. And it wouldn’t have taken a lot of imagination to “weaponize” one. With a little ingenuity, some leftover fireworks, and some determination, you could do some serious damage with a toy rocket. So I’m kinda not surprised they would add toy rockets/launchers to their list.

    If I’m wrong about this, I really wanna know who’s selling toy RPGs and the like.

    • I really wanna know who’s selling toy RPGs and the like.

      The ATF. But they don’t call them toys, they call them “salesmen’s samples.”

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