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August 22, 2006
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BB-gun sale puts Chicago store in cops' cross hairs after officer involved shooting

Making good on warnings that BB-guns are illegal in Chicago, police have busted a Northwest Side store owner for selling one of the plastic weapons to a 13-year-old boy, authorities said Monday.

William Garriga, 55, owner of Divas Videos and Music at 4758 W. Belmont, was cited for not having a license to sell firearms and for illegally selling BB-guns within city limits.

Garriga could face a fine of $250 to $500 for each violation and his business license could be in jeopardy. Police said he sold at least nine BB-guns.

After an officer shot and wounded a 14-year-old boy holding a metal BB-gun Aug. 7 near the Cabrini-Green housing complex, police stressed that BB-guns are illegal in the city. Police said the shooting was justified because the officer thought the gun was real.

Last Thursday, police received a call from Northwest Side residents about a red laser light shining from a window. Officer John Tierney discovered a 13-year-old bought the BB-gun, which looks like a 9mm pistol but has an orange tip to differentiate it from a real gun. The BB-gun in the Aug. 7 shooting did not have an orange tip.


Garriga told police he did not know BB-guns were illegal in Chicago. The Omega BB-gun the boy bought retails for $5 to $15, including BBs, a magazine for the BBs and a battery for the laser site, police said.

Officers confiscated seven BB-guns on display in Divas, police said.

The boy's mother said he and friends were eating at a restaurant before they went into Divas for movies. He saw the BB-guns and bought one, she said. The boy was grounded and lectured after the incident, his mother said.

Related Articles:
But what if it isn't really a gun?Cops: Shooting Justified: But 'they didn't have to shoot him,' boy's mom says Chicago cops shoot teen holding BB gunHundreds protest police shooting of teen in Chicago
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