VOLUSIA COUNTY, FL – Multiple jurisdictions have been receiving reports of people hit by Orbeez, the gel beads fired from toy blaster guns. Known as the “Orbeez challenge,” the trend has been spreading on social media and coaches kids to shoot strangers and each other.
Last week, Volusia sheriff’s deputies arrested a 19-year-old man, Sean McMullen, of Enterprise, who police say fired Orbeez at an Amazon delivery driver Thursday in Deltona, hitting him in his glasses and neck while he was driving his route.
McMullen is also accused with shooting another random adult and a 10-year-old child in the face and chest. Deputies identified and located McMullen on Friday, charging him with shooting into an occupied vehicle, child abuse, and two counts of battery.
Also Friday, two people at Wes Crile Park in Deltona were hit by pellets fired from a van that took off after the shooting. The same van was reported by another victim, a man trimming trees outside a Deltona home, who told deputies he was shot in the back by Orbeez beads. The pellets broke the skin and left red welts.
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Deputies tracked down the van and charged 18-year-old, Diego Medina Vega of Deltona, and two 17-year-olds with battery. Vega was additionally charged with two counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
Additionally this week, a group of kids appeared to be shooting Orbeez at each other from their vehicles when one crashed into a pole Monday at Dewey O. Boster Park in Deltona. In Port Orange, a woman pushing a child in a stroller was the victim of a drive-by Orbeez shooting. The Port Orange Police Department is investigating.
The New Smyrna Beach Police Department also recently posted a warning about Orbeez.