New Tik Tok challenge encourages drive-by toy gun shootings

NASSAU COUNTY, Fla. — Fernandina Beach police are warning parents about a social media challenge that could land their children in trouble.

Police say this has happened not once but twice.

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“You know, what if that happened like to you. Like if someone drives by and shoots you,” said Hailey Powell.

“I don’t think it’s safe for people around the neighborhood,” said Audra Hinckley.

Powell and Hinckley are seventh graders who are concerned about this new viral social media trend.

“I heard it from Tik Tok, there was a bunch of videos going around of people showing videos they’ve seen,” says Hinckley.

Audra Hinckley tells me she saw this Tik Tok challenge right before spring break.

It’s called the “Orbeez Challenge”.

The challenge encourages kids to do “drive-bys”, to shoot at strangers and each other.

“Orbeez” are small water beads.

According to police, teens are using these beads to shoot at people with “Splat-a guns” or gel guns.

On Tuesday, Fernandina Beach police posted on Facebook alerting the community to two incidents involving the “Orbeez Challenge”.

The incidents happened in downtown Fernandina Beach.

Hello friends, There are many “trends” on social media platforms. Recently the #OrbeexGun trend appears to encourage...

Posted by Fernandina Beach Police Department on Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Fernandina Beach Police Deputy Chief Jeffrey Tambasco tells me the most recent “drive-by shooting” happened over the weekend.

Tambasco says the two teens were identified and released to their parents, since there were charges filed.

Police want parents to be aware of these social media trends that land their children in major trouble.

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Hinckley has this message to other teens who are on spring break.

“You should make better decisions with your friends, do more things age-appropriate,” she says.

The Atlantic Beach Police Department also responded to an incident involving an Orbeez gun. It happened in the area of Adele Grage Center and Bull Park on Wednesday.

A person was struck in the face with a projectile from an Orbeez gun and police charged two juveniles who were involved. The person was not seriously injured.

This afternoon officers again responded to juveniles shooting at people with BB guns. This incident occurred in the area...

Posted by Atlantic Beach Police Department on Wednesday, March 16, 2022