Shootings prompt some WAVE Country movie theaters to search bags
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – Now showing outside Regal Cinemas - signs posted to let guests know their belongings are subject to be checked.
Regal Entertainment Group operates 570 movie theaters nationwide including theaters in New Albany, Clarksville, Madison, Seymour and Bedford, Indiana. Shelbyville, Kentucky also has a Regal cinema.
"I don't have a problem with that at all," said Nathaniel Smith.
"They do it at Disney World, why not do it at the movies," was Larry Brooner's opinion.
On the Regal Entertainment Group website, it briefly outlined the new policy stating, "Security issues have become a daily part of our lives in America and Regal wants customers and staff to feel comfortable and safe."
"I'm perfectly fine with having my bag checked, if it means safety for me and my family," said Kim Davis.
The policy goes on to say that Regal acknowledges that this procedure can cause some inconvenience and that it is not without flaws. Regal says they hope the inconveniences are minor in comparison to increased safety.
"I feel it is very important to make sure your patrons are safe and have a safe place to come," Davis continued.
In the last 30 days, there have been two separate movie theater attacks.
A man in Louisiana shot and killed two people and wounded nine others on July 23.
More recently, outside of Nashville, a man armed with a hatchet, pellet gun and pepper spray went after a group of people before he was shot and killed by police.
In 2012, a Colorado movie theater shooting cost 12 people their lives.
Many moviegoers we talked to say these cases come to mind when they buy their tickets.
"I have to say it does," said Davis. "It is a concern."
"I don't come very often, but this is something that me and my son enjoy - seeing movies together - so we come about once or twice a month," said Smith.
Smith praised Regal for upping its security practices. While this may not cure all, he hopes in the long run it will deter crime.
"I would rather be able to walk out on my own two feet," he said.
Some moviegoers wondered what this means if employees were to find their hidden candy during a search. We got no definitive answer, but the website does say no outside food or drink is allowed.
WAVE 3 News did reach out to Regal for more information on this new policy, but did not hear back.
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