High Point police advise against getting kids BB guns as presents

HIGH POINT, N.C. -- More and more kids are asking their parents for BB guns for Christmas.

The High Point Police Department says this is one gift you should not grant this holiday season.

They say owning one leads to a spike in vandalism, larceny and putting officers in a tough position.

It's hard to spot the difference between a BB gun and a firearm.

"That's a gamble we don't want to unnecessarily take," Lt. Curtis Cheeks III said.

He says a BB gun looks exactly like his handgun.

This is the problem police constantly come across when they receive a call about a gun.

They don't know if it's a BB or an airsoft gun and it puts officers in a tough situation.

"It's a split second decision," Cheeks said.

He said it becomes dangerous when an officer's order to put down the weapon doesn't happen.

"Heightens that officer's awareness even more," Cheeks said.

This is why some gun shop owners are also cracking down.

You'll find almost every gun inside of SCB Gun and Ammo except for a BB or airsoft gun.

"They're just so realistic it's just unbelievable," owner Pam Brinkley said.

Brinkley said they've tried to sell just a few in the past, but the fear of what could happen took them off the shelves for good.

Police say kids still find a way to have them even when parents say no.

Cheeks said kids tend to shoplift at big retail stores and parents have to be mindful.

"If you didn't purchase it for them, question where it came from and by all means take it from them," Cheeks said.