Type of BB Guns Used in Recent Shootings Can Make Difference Between Life and Death, Expert Says

More than 100 BB gun shootings and vandalism cases have been reported in San Diego county since June, officials said.

Car windows and storefronts have been some of the targets and police haven’t caught the suspects responsible. Chula Vista, La Mesa, National City, Coronado Harbor, and San Diego police departments, along with the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department are all working BB gun crime cases in their jurisdiction.

Officials tell NBC 7 it’s not clear what kind of gun is being used, but they firmly believe it may be a BB or pellet gun.

Gun expert Dennis Rhoman says two types of guns that can be used in these incidents can cause different damage.

Rhoman is the manager at P2K Sports near El Cajon. He broke down the difference between a BB gun and a pellet gun. First showing a pellet gun that can shoot up to 1,300 feet per second.

"That could actually be fatal if shot at the right part of someone's anatomy," said Rhoman.

Rhoman reviewed photos of some of the damaged windows, but like police, couldn’t tell what type of gun was used.

"It's difficult to say whether those are BB or pellets without the projectiles,” said Rhoman. He says BB’s are strong enough to break glass but will usually bounce off and not shoot through.

"BB’s are a hard steel, so if it shot that glass and cracked it, the BB can end up 100 feet away if it rolls or bounces," Rhoman said.

He says if someone is hit by a BB gun it'll most likely leave a welt, nothing more serious. Pellets, on the other hand, can cause more serious damage.

"They are lead based and can be used for more serious shooters. That'll permeate through your skin. If these hit in the right place, it can be fatal," Rhoman explained.

According to police reports, no one has been seriously injured in the recent BB-gun-style shootings. If anyone has information about the incidents call police at (619) 531-2000.

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