FREMONT-- Officers swarmed the campus of a career college Tuesday evening after a teenage boy toting what appeared to be an AK-47 was seen roaming around the campus and pointing the weapon at classroom windows, police said.
The Fremont police dispatch center was flooded with 911 calls about 7:30 p.m. from people on campus reporting someone with an assault rifle wandering around the Medical Career College, located at 41300 Christy St., ducking through bushes and pointing the firearm at windows, police spokeswoman Geneva Bosques said.
"The seriousness of that report is a high-priority call for us," she said. "We clearly took it for the potential of what it could have been."
Officers found the boy inside his family's business on the same block of Christy Street, where a family member told police that the weapon was an Airsoft gun, a replica firearm that fires plastic pellets. Police found a total of three Airsoft guns inside the building, all of which had the orange tips removed from the barrel that indicate they are a replica.
"When that orange tip is removed, they look real," Bosques said. "We told them the seriousness of his actions. Even a replica firearm pointed at windows at a school campus appears very, very dangerous."
The teen, a Fremont resident, said he knew class was in session while he was roaming the campus, but said he was only shooting cardboard boxes and did not shoot any pellets at the school buildings, Bosques said.
The boy was cited and released to his father. The pair handed over all three Airsoft guns to police, and the boy's father told them he would be punished.
Residents with Airsoft weapons are urged to have a discussion with their children about gun safety, even with replicas, and to emphasize the importance of the orange barrel tip, Bosques said. While the teen was only cited for one misdemeanor for removing the orange tips from the gun, he could have been cited a second time for carrying an imitation firearm in a public place.
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