PCF Member, others arrested in Ohio over Nerf Guns

NVWC2006 10-25-2006 08:27 PM
Game leads to arrests - Campus

I know of this because I am in the area, I attend the University of Toledo, while fellow member Schwarzwald_X attends Bowling Green State University with other friends of mine, like my girlfriend and many of my high school friends.

For the past few weeks, a game has been designed over Facebook, where, in during THIS week, there'd be this Zombie Hunt thing... something with, wearing orange bandanas on campus to show you are participating, wearing it in a different way made you a Zombie or a Hunter.

Some of the students, including Schwarzwald_X went w/another game idea, where if I understand correctly, Zombies can be temporarily thwarted by shooting them with Nerf guns.

Some reported fear of the situation involving guns, not knowing what was going on, and students were arrested.

Student POV: They're Nerf guns. They're bright and colorful. And it's just a game. Other colleges do it. Why can't we? No one was gonna get hurt. This is stupid. Arresting and fining is WAY more than what should have happened.

Police POV: It doesn't matter. We don't tolerate any guns or gun-related thing. If it has a trigger and fires something, it's a gun. We received calls of people worried, and we reacted. Other colleges who have similar games, the students WARN the police first. We had no prior knowledge.

Personally, when I first heard of the Zombie Hunt idea thing, I knew something would happen. And I'm leaning toward the police here. I think it was immature of the students to think, just because the shape or color of a gun, that it wouldn't be considered a threat, because it's STILL a gun. America has had 4 school shootings in about the past month. The students should have at least have checked with the campus police to see what they thought of it.

There ARE opposing views however, and I think this is a topic of worthwhile debate.

quote:
Game leads to arrests
By: Andrea Slivka


Kelly Kaczmarek was sitting in her ethics class yesterday afternoon, when a campus police officer came to question her about having what appeared to be a weapon.

Kaczmarek was one of several students carrying toy Nerf guns on campus as part of a week-long role-playing game called Humans vs. Zombies.

But the game ended after less than four hours of play when University police began issuing citations to students who were participating.

Police arrested two male students in Olscamp about 3:30 p.m., escorted another student into the police station and issued Kaczmarek a citation. Three students were carrying brightly-colored Nerf guns, and a fourth was carrying a small black Nerf gun.

The students were issued citations for disorderly conduct, according to Chief Jim Wiegand of the University police. Weigand said the students created a panic situation by carrying what appeared to be firearms on campus.

"We do not allow weapons or facsimiles of weapons on campus," he said.

The police began issuing citations after receiving several phone calls from people concerned that weapons were being carried on campus, according to Wiegand. He also said police were being cautious in light of the recent shootings around the country.

But students questioned whether Nerf guns look enough like real weapons to warrant citations.

"They're bright yellow and blue," said Megan Pirrung, junior. "It says 'Nerf' on the side."

Adam Curtis, a sophomore participating in the game, said police should have taken the appearance and the type of weapon into consideration.

"If it's a toy gun, every 5-year-old in town is probably going to own one," he said.

The game's premise involved students playing zombies trying to turn those playing humans into zombies. Those playing humans used tactics and Nerf guns to avoid being turned into zombies. Kaczmarek was upset about being issued the citation.

"The rules we had were designed specifically for safety of people inside and outside of the group," she said.

Pirrung said all players could clearly be identified by each other because they each wore orange bandanas.

Aryn Griffis, senior, immediately called her freshman brother, Jory, after finding out he had been one of the first two arrested for playing the game. She said police told him the maximum fine for the citation is $100, although police could not confirm it last night. Police also couldn't confirm the total number of students who were issued citations.

Students questioned why University police were taking action against the players when similar role-playing games are traditionally played at other universities, such as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Sgt. Clarence Henniger, of the MIT police, said MIT allows a group of students called the Assassins Guild to hold similar role-playing games each year because the students inform the police of the game ahead of time. The police know when and where the game would be played and what equipment would be used as weapons.

"As long as no one is injured or anyone's rights are violated, we don't see any problem with it," he said.

But he guessed the response of the MIT police could be different if they weren't informed of the game. He said if students held a similar game without informing the MIT police and concerned community members called the police, then the police would likely respond.

Pirrung didn't think BGSU students needed approval from the University Police or the administration, but that informing the police ahead of time could have prevented the citations.

But Wiegand said that if students had informed police ahead of time, facsimiles of weapons would still not be allowed on campus.

Students were sorry to see the game end.

"The game was a good idea," said Terry Quickle, sophomore. "It was just trying to allow people to have fun on campus without destroying anything or hurting anyone."
evanASF27 10-25-2006 08:51 PM
that is BULLSH*T! We have Nerf wars in our freakin dorm. We had one this month infact. We had it set up so that the R.A.'s were the "Presidents" and half the floor was "Secret Service" and the other half "assasins". We bought Nerf guns (the revolver kind) at Walmart and even one big freakin bazooka Nerf gun. We designated areas of low-traffic around campus that we could use for "shooting".

It was totaly legit (my side lost ;_; damn!). That's complete bull.
Sharpshooter005 10-25-2006 08:54 PM
It's important not to dart to conclusions with a case like this
088nd 10-25-2006 09:26 PM
quote:
Originally posted by Sharpshooter005
It's important not to dart to conclusions with a case like this


Die. Right now. Just die.
David Ryder 10-25-2006 09:33 PM
quote:
It's important not to dart to conclusions with a case like this


This is true. They could have made modified them into spear shooting death machines.
Generalissimo D 10-25-2006 09:36 PM
They should have used real guns for an authentic zombie-hunting experience.
Sharpshooter005 10-25-2006 10:00 PM
You'll shoot your eye out kid.

edit: Well because you insisted. The adventures of shark boy and lava girl was a ripoff of the trial
088nd 10-25-2006 10:10 PM
Sharpshooter, seriously, first a horrible pun, than a reference to A Christmas Story.

What's next, an analogy to comparing Robert Rodriguez's films to a subplot in a Kafka novel?

GIVE ME A BREAK.
paul1290 10-27-2006 03:08 PM
On one hand, they probably should have informed the police before starting the game. But still, it's just really stupid that they were arrested for nerf guns. Just about every kid has one nowadays.

Our society is just becoming more and more paranoid for no real reason. Violence and crime has been going down for the past several years. There is much less violence in America then there was just a couple years ago, and yet some people are just never satisfied.

Besides violence and crime are the price we pay for our freedom. If you don't like it then don't live in America.
Hobodoken 10-27-2006 03:14 PM
This reminds me of how our First Year Orientation Guides bought a Nerf shotgun, since our dorm theme was military or somesuch... anyhow, they painted it black. Bammo! It looked like a real shotgun! They realized their error, and left it behind.


The moral: Colorblind people might not be able to tell the difference.


Still messed up though.
Mike 10-27-2006 04:30 PM
... you know, someone could probably paint a real gun neon green and orange and everyone would think it's a toy. Think about that.
Nine Kuze 10-27-2006 04:35 PM
quote:
Originally posted by Mike
... you know, someone could probably paint a real gun neon green and orange and everyone would think it's a toy. Think about that.

Ooo. The vice versa routine, and that's a good point as well. Interesting how that situation would be played out.

Also damn shame for ol' boy who got arrested and I think it was a little bit over the top as well.
Peace.
Schwarzwald_X 10-28-2006 03:53 PM
Yeah... I got arrested for having a nerf gun. Can't say I blame the cops for doing their job, but I think their reaction was a bit too much. I have to pay a $100 fine plus court costs. The way I see it, a warning accompanied by confiscation of my toy would've been enough. Alas- no more Nerf for me.
NVWC2006 10-28-2006 04:12 PM
quote:
Originally posted by paul1290
Our society is just becoming more and more paranoid for no real reason. Violence and crime has been going down for the past several years. There is much less violence in America then there was just a couple years ago, and yet some people are just never satisfied.


I find it hard to be satisified when there are 4 school shootings in a months time. Even if crime overall drops, the fact is that each one of these shootings was on national media, and insane people have this thing where they see the glamour of other shootings and try it themselves. (kinda like how, after a suicide that is made into news, others will attempt as well, like an echo affect)

quote:
Originally posted by Schwarzwald_X
Yeah... I got arrested for having a nerf gun. Can't say I blame the cops for doing their job, but I think their reaction was a bit too much. I have to pay a $100 fine plus court costs. The way I see it, a warning accompanied by confiscation of my toy would've been enough. Alas- no more Nerf for me.


I would agree with you, but honestly I don't know all of BG's rules. At UT, they give you an agenda book, you like sign off for it, and by signing off, you sign a contract saying you agree to ALL the rules in the book and understand them completely. But no one ever reads the rules. It could be in a BG handbook somewhere that any situation that calls upon the police warrents a fine, or something.
paul1290 10-29-2006 07:45 AM
quote:
Originally posted by NVWC2006
quote:
Originally posted by paul1290
Our society is just becoming more and more paranoid for no real reason. Violence and crime has been going down for the past several years. There is much less violence in America then there was just a couple years ago, and yet some people are just never satisfied.


I find it hard to be satisified when there are 4 school shootings in a months time. Even if crime overall drops, the fact is that each one of these shootings was on national media, and insane people have this thing where they see the glamour of other shootings and try it themselves. (kinda like how, after a suicide that is made into news, others will attempt as well, like an echo affect)

School shootings are like airplane crashes in the fact that they get lots of media attention when in reality they occur relatively infrequently. There have been times where the number of school shootings increased, but a child's chances of getting killed or injured in one is still very insignificant compared to his/her chances of getting killed or injured outside of school.
The Fallen Phoenix 10-29-2006 10:49 PM
quote:
Originally posted by paul1290
School shootings are like airplane crashes in the face that they get lots of media attention when in reality they occur relatively infrequently. There have been times where the number of school shootings increased, but a child's chances of getting killed or injured in one is still very insignificant compared to his/her chances of getting killed or injured outside of school.


As an interesting aside to that, there is a greater chance of Americans dying due to coconuts falling on their heads than in a terrorist attack on their home soil.

...think about that.

As for nerf guns, a couple of years ago some of my upperclassman friends were playing around with modified nerf guns on campus. There were reports of projectiles being fired, campus officials were alerted, and ultimately the response was, "oh, it's just [those notorious students] playing with their nerf guns again".

So responses are going to vary from campus to campus, as well as overall context (time and climate across the country). Just some additional thoughts to chew on.
Sharpshooter005 10-29-2006 11:33 PM
Pretty much it all depends on any agreements people signed when they agreed to be students on that campus. I know some have mentioned signing agreements which precluded them from even having replica weapons on campus, if its the same for those involved in this case then....either they signed something without reading it (not a good idea) or chose to violate it.

At which point...legally, at least, they'll wind up being at fault
Blue Crow 11-22-2006 04:43 PM
well, if you're going to get arrested either way you might as well actually shoot someone. right?

go big or go home.

- BC
NVWC2006 11-22-2006 07:25 PM
quote:
Originally posted by Blue Crow
well, if you're going to get arrested either way you might as well actually shoot someone. right?

go big or go home.

- BC


It's like this classic situation:

child: you won't let me do what i want! this is abuse!

parent: like hell it is

child: i'm calling the police!

parent: you go on ahead, but if the police are going to come and arrest me for abuse, i'm going to make sure some REAL abuse happens before they get here.

child:...uh oh
Shady Dark Lady 11-23-2006 09:52 AM
It's just sad we live in a society where kids are NOT allowed to play tag at school. At my local community college, NO guns of any type are allowed, as the property is owned by the Quakers. It is a shame they felt they had to arrest people for having Nerf guns, but I guess that is the way it is. I don't see why they couldn't have come to some compromise, but maybe if they are notified of the game, then if there is a next time, make sure it is WELL publicized so there is no excuse for them to arrest anyone the next time.

Where I live, they just arrested some $#%@% jerks for shooting people with paintball guns at Halloween. One was an elderly man who was hospitalized for a few weeks. They also shot a pregnant woman and a few others before they were caught. Idiots like that are going to get paintball guns banned in New Jersey. Hell, you have to have a permit for a bbgun now, because of similiar incidents. They ruin it for legitimate paintball players.