Police: Man Painted Handgun Red to Resemble Toy
CINCINNATI — Dec 12, 2014 By DAN SEWELL Associated Press
Southwest Ohio authorities said Friday they arrested a man with a loaded handgun painted red to resemble a toy.
The arrest came just four days after legislation was introduced in the
state to require that lookalike guns be brightly colored or otherwise
marked. Ohio lawmakers took up the bill following two police fatal
shootings of young people carrying lookalike guns in recent months.
Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Neil said it's "a scary thought" that guns would be painted to mislead police.
Police responding to a call about a man with a gun said they found
Orlando Lowery, 23, with a .380-caliber handgun painted red and 9 grams
of cocaine. No attorney was listed for Lowery, who was jailed on a
concealed weapons charge and a drug count.
The bill, introduced Monday by Rep. Alicia Reece, would require all BB
guns, air rifles and airsoft guns stand out in color or have prominent
fluorescent strips. The Cincinnati Democrat named the bill after
22-year-old John Crawford III, who was carrying an air rifle this summer
in a suburban Dayton Wal-Mart store when he was fatally shot by police.
Police said they thought Crawford had an assault rifle. Last month, a
12-year-old boy carrying a pellet gun in Cleveland was fatally shot by
The legislation was modeled after a California law. Several other states and cities have similar laws.
Some opponents of the bill have expressed skepticism about whether such
measures would be effective in preventing fatal shootings, and some have
suggested that criminals would try to disguise weapons to cause police
The sheriff said his office wouldn't get into the debate over the bill, but would provide some facts about the arrest.
"And the fact is right here in Hamilton County, we arrested a dangerous
individual who we believe purposefully painted a loaded handgun red to
mislead law enforcement into thinking this was a toy gun," Neil said in