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Sioux City council advances measure banning toy firearms

November 6, 2018

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — City officials in northwest Iowa are considering banning people from carrying some forms of “toy” firearms, which police say are becoming increasingly difficult to distinguish from real guns.

The Sioux City Council tentatively approved an ordinance on Monday that would ban pellet and BB guns. The proposal wouldn’t ban Nerf or squirt guns, or guns that shoot suction-cup darts.

The city attorney’s office says more readings and votes are required at future council meetings for the ordinance to be adopted.

Sioux City Police Capt. Mark Kirkpatrick says officers have had multiple encounters with replica weapons and faced the question of whether to use deadly force. No one in Sioux City has died from a police encounter while carrying a toy firearm, but there have been more than 50 such deaths nationwide each year.

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This story has been corrected to show that additional City Council votes are needed before the ordinance could take effect.

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