DAPHNE, Ala. (WKRG) — A warning from two police departments in Baldwin County: do not use a popular toy gun to shoot people with water-based pellets or you could end up in jail.

The sound of the gun alone is frightening, like a machine gun, but it’s the pellets inside this SplatRBall gun that can be dangerous.

“Kind of looks like a Nerf gun,” said Heather deAngelo of the Daphne Police Department. “But it has water-filled pellets that on contact burst and has a gel inside.”

This month, there were four reports of people being shot with pellets in Daphne. The most recent was Sunday afternoon in Lake Forest.

“Someone was walking down the road, just minding her own business and someone drove by and decided to shoot at her with one of the splatter ball guns,” deAngelo said

The pellets left bruises and a young girl terrified. She was able to give police a description of the person and his vehicle and police are actively investigating those leads.

“I think it’s kids being kids but the problem with that,” deAngelo said. “if they shoot at the wrong person or someone hears the sound and thinks it is an actual gun then things may turn violent.”

Fairhope Police have also received reports of teenagers shooting at people downtown, at the pier and in neighborhoods. If arrested, those involved could be charged with disorderly conduct and potentially harassment.

What started as a social media challenge has now led to police trying to stop a tragedy before it happens. It may be a toy gun, but police aren’t playing.