Friday, October 02, 2009

Milwaukie school locked down in toy airsoft gun threat

MILWAUKIE -- A California boy was arrested today after he threatened people with a realistic-looking toy airsoft pistol, then fought with bystanders who tried to hold him.

No one was injured. However, St. John the Baptist Catholic School temporarily was locked down.

Officer Kevin Krebs, Milwaukie police spokesman, said police were called at 12:15 p.m. to Southeast Washington Street and 25th Avenue after a report of a man threatening people with a gun. When police arrived, they found that the suspect had gotten into a scuffle with people who tried to detain him and was running from the scene.

Yevgeniy A. Pavlenko, 15, of Oceanside, Calif., was arrested two blocks away. He was referred to Clackamas County juvenile authorities, accused of menacing and disorderly conduct.

Krebs said the suspect's gun, which resembled a Colt .45-caliber semiautomatic pistol, actually was an airsoft gun, a realistic-looking toy. Many airsoft guns are fitted with orange tips to distinguish them from real firearms, but the suspect's pistol did not have one.

AirSplat which sells airsoft guns, includes the following warning on the company Web site:

"Mistaken identification of an airsoft gun may result in the accidental death of the user. The airsoft gun must never be taken to an area in which a police officer or another person may interpret the airsoft as a real gun."

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