http://www.app.com/apps/pbcs.dll/ar.../601130393/1070 Officials want gun alteration ban Warning over replica weapons Posted by the Asbury Park Press on 01/13/06 BY MARGARET F. BONAFIDE TOMS RIVER BUREAU TOMS RIVER — The Ocean County prosecutor is calling on lawmakers to amend legislation and criminalize making air pellet guns look authentic. Prosecutor Thomas F. Kelaher held a news conference Thursday to raise awareness of the authentic-looking guns. They are being used by criminals, gangs and kids who just want to play games with the weapons "to look cool," Kelaher said. But they are deadly toys, he added. Air pellet gun products have a bright orange tip, but any officer confronted by one of the many models, which range from handguns to assault weapons, could shoot to kill, said Waretown Police Chief Kenneth B. Flatt. He added that it is "just a matter of time" before someone is killed. The orange tip can be easily altered or removed, he said. Fake guns are also used during armed robberies, said Flatt, who is president of the Ocean County Chiefs of Police Association. A criminal can easily paint an orange tip on a real gun, authorities said. However, police can't take such risks on a gun being real or fake, Flatt said. "If you point one of these at someone, a police officer is trained to shoot," Flatt said. The guns have been confiscated on several occasions by police in Ocean and Monmouth counties. Officers have seized authentic recreations of weapons from Beretta handguns to an AR-15 assault weapon. In Point Pleasant Beach, three juveniles were charged in 2004 for using a replica pellet handgun to shoot from a moving car at two women standing outside a church. Replica toy guns can be purchased at flea markets including Lakewood and Collingswood.