A Bremerton Police officer took this picture. Which handgun is real? Which one is a replica? What if your life depended on making the right choice? (Bremerton Police Department)

Why replica handguns can be dangerous | Police Calls

This week we’ll title our first incident, “You Might Want to Think About Not Drawing That Much Attention to Yourself.”

Officers Derek Ejde and Steven Forbragd were dispatched to a routine welfare check at a house. The caller said that a friend had texted her from there saying “she needed help.”

When officers arrived just to make sure everything was OK, a man looked out of a window, apparently saw the officers, and proceeded to go berserk, repeatedly slamming the door, pounding his fists and demanding that the officers leave. He said he would not come out and talk to the officers.

After attempting to make peaceful contact with him for several minutes so they could confirm that anyone else inside was all right, officers still could not confirm that anyone else was actually in there … but they were able to determine the man had an outstanding arrest warrant.

Once more colleagues arrived, officers made a forced entry into the home to detain the man with the warrant and to ensure that there was no one else inside. There was no one else and the man went to jail, but not until after resisting arrest and drawing more unwanted attention at the jail.

Corporal Duke Roessel handled a somewhat confusing call on April 27 on the Manette Bridge. Apparently, it involved two women who engaged in an animated argument in their car while on the bridge. One woman started kicking the dashboard of the car, breaking off a chunk of plastic. The other woman pulled over on the bridge and told the other to get out, so number two punched number one, then got out and tossed the broken piece over the side of the bridge.

Officers are still following up on this one, but the confusing part was that the argument involved a business in which the two are partners: an essential oils and organic aroma business. I thought those were supposed be make you relaxed and more mindful?

Officer Forbragd and the team did a great job on locating and stopping a stolen car this week. Visit the city’s website for the press release.

At the risk of being way too repetitive, this week I am bringing you yet another story about a replica firearm taken from someone, to show how dangerous these replicas are and why it is so dangerous for officers to try to figure out which is which.

A man called us because he was unhappy with someone trespassing on his property, and this was apparently an ongoing issue. The property owner had enough and asked the trespasser to leave, and the younger man pulled out a gun and pointed it at him. The man was subsequently arrested, and the gun turned out to be a 1911- style replica “Airsoft” handgun.

Our officers took this picture below with a real handgun of the same type, along with the replica. Which one is real? What if your life depended on making the right choice? Remember, as well, that if an officer uses deadly force because they see one of these, the omniscient and anonymous social media will say, “The cops shot someone who wasn’t even carrying a real gun.”

We have now seen at least one of these replica firearms for three straight weeks. Keep this in mind, please, as we continue to debate the best ways to keep people safe, including officers.

Work hard, have fun, stay safe.

— Steven D. Strachan is chief of the Bremerton Police Department. Contact him at Steven.Strachan@ci.bremerton.wa.us.

A Bremerton Police officer took this picture. Which handgun is real? Which one is a replica? What if your life depended on making the right choice? (Bremerton Police Department)

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