15-year-old with BB gun taken into custody outside of Target in Madison Heights

Police say no one was hurt

Teen armed with BB gun arrested outside Target in Madison Heights
Teen armed with BB gun arrested outside Target in Madison Heights

MADISON HEIGHTS, Mich. – A 15-year-old boy armed with a BB gun was taken into custody outside of a Target store in Madison Heights.

Madison Heights police said the weapon that the teen was carrying is believed to have been altered to look real.

Officers were called just before noon Thursday, May 6, to the Target on John R Road about someone with a gun.

When they arrived, the 15-year-old ran into the store with a weapon in hand.

“He got ahold of an employee and threatened her with the weapon, told her that he was not going to shoot but he demanded her to let him out of the building,” said Madison Heights Police Chief Corey Haines.

Police scrambled to warn the employees and set up a perimeter. As the teen ran out of the side door, officers spotted him.

The teen kept running back and fourth with the gun in hand.

“Although it was a air soft gun, that gun was modified. The orange end was removed from it ... even up close, it looks exactly like any weapon would look like,” Haines said.

Haines also talked about the officer’s mindset as he yelled out commands 16 times before the teen finally threw the gun down and got on the ground.

“What was in the back of his mind is everything that’s happened in this country over the last couple years with law enforcement. It really struck a cord with him that this could’ve been the next national incident. He used such great discretion and kept everybody safe and was able to take this kid into custody with nobody getting hurt, which in my world, is amazing,” he said.

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Jason anchors Local 4's 5:30 p.m. newscast. He joined WDIV in January 2015 as a general assignment reporter and has a Journalism degree from Michigan State University.

DeJanay Booth joined WDIV as a web producer in July 2020. She previously worked as a news reporter in New Mexico before moving back to Michigan.