Alpharetta Police Work at Movie Theaters Every Weekend
It's been commonplace for years to see uniformed police officers at theaters across North Fulton and the rest of the region, and a tragic shooting in Colorado hasn't changed much here.
A shooting in a Colorado movie theater during the midnight premiere of "The Dark Knight Rises" won't change anything at Alpharetta's two movie theaters. Alpharetta police officers have been working off-duty jobs at the two North Point Parkway locations–UA North Point Market and AMC Mansell Crossing 14–for years at the request of theater management, according to George Gordon, spokesman for the Alpharetta Department of Public Safety.
It's a similar story in Johns Creek, where the city's police department says that while it will have no extra security at Regal Cinemas Medlock this weekend, it will be on alert.
"We always have two uniform police officers at the Regal Cinemas every weekend. That’s at the request of the theater, and it’s been that way since the department started in 2008," said Rosemary Taylor, communications manager for the city of Johns Creek.
"These officers are working off-duty, but are in uniform in the lobby, parking lot, entrance area. We’re not adding any additional officers. Of course, all of Uniform Patrol will be on alert, as usual," she wrote in an e-mail to Patch.
According to Roswell Police Spokeswoman Lisa Holland, Aurora Cineplex hires the department's off-duty officers for extra security.
"So, I think we are always there anyway," she told Patch in an e-mail.
Other nearby police departments stated the same thing.
In nearby Suwanee, police spokesperson Capt. Clyde Byers said that the department plans no extra security. "Not at this time," he said.
In Cobb County, Sgt. Dana Pierce, public information officer at the Cobb Police Department, says that the uniformed presence at most movie theaters in his county should be sufficient to prevent patrons from attacks.
"There is definitely the possibility of copycat attacks," Pierce said. "However, most theaters already have uniformed police officers or sheriff's deputies on duty already."
Regal, the largest movie theater chain in the country, said this in a statement on its Facebook page:
"We are profoundly saddened by the tragedy that occurred at a Denver area theatre and are concerned for the victims and their families. The security and safety of our guests and staff is always our number one priority. As is our custom, we will continue to monitor the situation and adjust our security needs as necessary. In the meantime, our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families."