GARDAÍ are warning people to be extremely careful and to reflect before they post any photos on social media.
Gardaí in Kinsale received a call, on December 8th, following a student posting a picture of an airsoft gun on social media and they then liaised with the student, his parents and the school in Kinsale.
Gardaí have also seized a number of airsoft guns from the student and the investigation is ongoing and would like to highlight that everyone needs to think about what content they post on social media and the consequence of their posts.
In a statement gardaí said : ‘Whilst the social media post was inappropriate and is not condoned, gardaí are satisfied that there was no intention by the student to cause harm to any persons.’
However, Sgt James O’Donovan, community crime prevention officer has once more highlighted the damage inappropriate social media posting can cause.
‘People need to be aware of what they are putting on social media, it is open for all to see and can be interrupted in so many different ways,’ Sgt James O’Donovan told The Southern Star .
‘Remember that it’s not only your friends that can see what you’re putting up to on social media and these posts can be have a detrimental effect on our future.’
However, Airsoft guns are now classed as real imitation firearms (RIFs) and cannot be carried in public at any time. Recent legislation does make it an offence to possess a realistic imitation firearm in a public place without lawful authority or reasonable excuse. The penalties include up to five years imprisonment.
Airsoft guns are legal in Ireland since the 2006 Criminal Justice Act altered the Firearms Acts.
‘The mishandling of replica firearms which, intentionally or otherwise, causes alarm to a member of the general public is classed as assault and will be viewed as such in the eyes of the law. An Garda Siochana will always treat replica firearms with the same prejudice as actual firearms,’ a garda spokesperson said.