SACRAMENTO (AP) — The state Assembly has approved legislation that would require imitation airsoft guns to be sold in transparent or bright colors to avoid deadly mix-ups with police officers.
SB199 advanced on a 41-34 vote, the minimum needed to pass, after Republican lawmakers and a powerful Democrat blasted it as ineffective.
Democratic Sen. Kevin de Leon of Los Angeles introduced the bill after two California teenagers were shot by law enforcement officers confusing toy guns for real ones.
Airsoft guns are replica firearms that fire plastic pellets, paper balls or eraser chunks. Opponents say real guns already are sold in bright colors and that criminals could paint their weapons to confuse police.
Former Assembly Speaker John Perez, a Democrat, voted against the bill, saying (quote) “Paint is not the solution.”