Whether it’s real or not, you can’t just go walking around with something that looks like an assault rifle.
Two Campbell River men found that out the hard way last week when RCMP received a call that a man was walking up the Island Highway with an assault rifle and responded as if that was the case – because they have to take calls like that at face value, according to Cpl. Ron Vlooswyk of the Campbell River RCMP.
“There is no way of knowing a firearm is real or fake without close, hands-on inspection,” Vlooswyk says. “They are all treated as real by the responding officers and they are treated as real by the courts. This was a dangerous situation that could have turned out very badly if it hadn’t been for the coordinated member response with the caller who relayed good, accurate information.”
The two men were apprehended near Walmart and safely taken into custody without incident, Vlooswyk says.
Although the “assault rifle” was actually an airsoft rifle, it had the appearance of a real gun and as such was seized. Drugs and other weapons including nunchakus and knives were also found in the men’s possession and seized. Both men, aged 25 and 48, are charged with weapons offences – possession of a weapon dangerous to the public and possession of a prohibited weapon.
Their first court appearance is Aug. 27.