Police: 6 shot by gel pellets in St. Pete may have been victims of viral TikTok challenge
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Police in St. Petersburg are investigating after several people were shot by gel pellets over the weekend.
Mike Schuman appears to be one of the latest victims of the dangerous "Orbeez Challenge" on Tik Tok, where kids go around shooting strangers with gel pellets. He says he never saw it coming as a pellet struck him in the right eye.
"It just kept getting foggier like I could see lights through it but by the time I got checked into the hospital, I couldn’t see the other two people in the room," he explained.
Schuman was hanging with friends Saturday night outside a Kava bar in St. Pete when he says a black Nissan pulled up and started firing those pellets. Police say Schuman’s case is one of at least six cases they're looking into, likely all related to the same folks. However, no arrests have been made so far.
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"It may seem funny, but it’s not that funny when you could put someone's life at risk," said St. Petersburg Police Department spokesperson Ashley Limardo.
Mike Schuman was hit in the eye by a gel pellet during what police say may have been due to a TikTok challenge.
"That’s not how I planned for my Saturday night to end up, five hours in the ER with a hefty bill to boot," said Schuman.
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Schuman says his eye is doing better now. He says the folks taking part in this trend need to think twice before trying to go viral.
"We had so long having to stay home because of the pandemic and everything and worry about that kind of stuff, we don’t need something else to worry about trying to go out and live life again," he said.
TikTok images of people shooting gel pellets as part of Orbeez challenge.
The suspects could face simple battery charges or worse, depending on the injuries they inflicted.
Anyone with information on the case should contact the St. Petersburg Police Department.