An Arlington police officer had to make a split second decision when a 15-year old boy pulled a BB gun that looked like a real gun.
The 14-year-veteran officer had just pulled into a church parking lot at Park Row and Sherry when police say a nervous looking 15-year-old boy walked up to the squad car. A police report says he refused commands to back away and pulled a BB gun on the officer as he was getting out of the car.
“The officer immediately knocked it out of the individuals hand only because of the close proximity that he had advanced on him,” said Chief Will Johnson.
Police say the officer had already told the teenager several times to back away from the car.
“I can think of no reason that gun has to look like that,” said Johnson as he explained how difficult it can be to tell apart a real gun from a BB gun.
Since January, Arlington police say they've recovered ten BB guns, or real looking fake guns, used in crimes.
“All the way to a commercial robbery where it was presented as a firearm in order to rob the business,” said Johnson. “Officers are coming in contact with this almost on a daily basis."
The teen was taken to the ground and handcuffed. The officer called for backup. The officer didn't want to talk publicly about what happened but wrote in his report, "I took a few minutes to try to calm down as I believed until a few minutes ago someone had attempted to kill me."
Johnson said everyone is glad with how this turned out, but every encounter is different.
“If the officer hadn't been that close, his reaction might have been for a different tool,” said Johnson. “I think everybody knows what tool that would have been."
The 15-year-old has been charged with making a terroristic threat.