Gel-Guns Are Not as Harmless as They Seem

Gel-Guns Are Not as Harmless as They Seem

By Yehudit Garmaise

The brightly colored plastic gel guns are marketed as toys, however, police are worried about their increasing popularity. 

TikTok recently began to encourage users to record and post themselves performing “drive-by” shootings using these guns that have caused injuries to unsuspecting victims.

Police across the nation have reported shooting incidents involving the guns, some causing injuries. 

The guns are illegal in New York City, according to the NYPD, because they are considered “air rifles,” due to the spring-loaded air pumps that propel soft gel pellets out of the guns.

Statewide, the guns are allowed in some areas, but counties can set individual laws that prohibit them. 

State law requires replica guns to have brightly colored stems and features that tell the police and public that gel guns are not firearms.

Called Gel Blasters, Bead Blasters, and Orbi guns, the gel guns first gained popularity among enthusiasts of tactical games, who wear protective clothing and masks, but due to the disturbing social media trend, called the “#OrbeezChallenge,” many unsuspecting victims have been injured nationwide.

On Sunday, Ramapo police arrested a 16-year-old on attempted assault and other charges after he used a gel gun to shoot an unsuspecting victim in the face. 

The guns’ “bullets” are soft gel pellets that are not lethal, nor toxic, but they hurt upon impact.

A spray of the pellets, which users sometimes freeze in advance, can cause people to fall down and can cause injuries, welts, and eye injuries, especially when they are shot at close range, Rockland Sheriff’s Office Detective Lt. Chris Ford, the director of the Rockland Intelligence Center told Lohud.

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