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Police reprimand boys with BB gun that looked like real gun

Police said they found this BB gun in a playground.
Police said they found this BB gun in a playground.Boston Police

Four boys who were playing with a BB gun designed to look like a real firearm were reprimanded by Boston police after a run-in with officers at a playground in South Boston on Tuesday, according to police.

At about 7 p.m., officers responding to a call about a person with a gun at Sweeney Playground on 5th Street saw a group of four boys, and witnessed one boy take what appeared to be a black handgun from his waistband and pass it to another boy. The two boys then ran through the park where they were cut off by other officers, according to a police department account.

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When the boy with the gun saw the officers, he pulled the gun from his waistband, according to police, paused for moment, then dropped the gun on the ground.

Officers confiscated what turned out to be a BB gun designed to look like a Beretta PX4 Storm .40 caliber gun, according to a statement from Boston police.

The boys were released to their guardians after they were spoken to about “the situation they had created in choosing to possess what appeared to be a real gun,” the statement said.

“When we talk about the dangers created when a kid picks up a replica firearm, these are the incidents we’re talking about,” said Boston Police Commissioner William B. Evans. “Thankfully, my officers showed tremendous restraint and because of that, we were able to turn what could have been a tragedy into a teaching moment.”


Sarah Roberts can be reached at sarah.roberts@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @heysarahroberts