Authorities are reporting a drive-by shooting that represents a first for this Detroit suburb.
A spud gun, a homemade device made from a plastic pipe, is capable of shooting a potato 500 feet a second and has some police officers concerned."We knew it was only a matter of time before one showed up," Lt. William Tullock said Friday. "It's really like a small bazooka . . . that can do some real damage."
Two 15-year-old boys were fired upon Tuesday by two youths who pulled up in a pickup truck and shot the weapon, missing the teens but striking a wall.
A potato or apple is shoved into one end of the tube and a propellant such as lighter fluid is ignited in the opposite end.
Police say the weapon's projectile is capable of breaking a window or denting a car door and could cause serious injury if it strikes an individual.
"While we don't have any particular laws against spud guns, we want to stress that they are very dangerous and because of their capability would be considered to be constructed to injure someone, so criminal charges would likely result from using one," Tullock said.
The device was used in an episode of the CBS series Picket Fences and has surfaced in several other states, including Utah.