Just over 12 hours after 12 people were killed, 71 were shot and 59 were wounded during a massacre at a midnight viewing of “The Dark Knight Rises” in Aurora, Colo., managers at said that they will tighten up security for this weekend in the Mattituck Shopping Plaza.
Manager Shane Alexander said that Friday morning’s tragedy has not affected ticket sales for the new Batman movie, which started playing at 12:30 p.m. at the theater on Friday, and he expected to be busier than usual in the evenings.
“But we’re not allowing backpacks at all in the theater,” he said. “Sometimes kids riding their bicycles here have a knapsack, but we will search it and store it up front — no one can take a backpack into the theater.”
Alexander said that anyone in costume will not be allowed into Mattituck Cinemas, and that workers have been informed to keep a close eye on exits. Chief Martin Flatley said he’s increased police patrols of the shopping plaza and around the during the weekend play times.
"The shooting and the circumstances surrounding will definitely be a consideration,” the chief said.
Alexander added that he’s never had to deal with any threatening situation at the Mattituck theater during his eight years of working there, let alone something as violent as what happened in Colorado.
“The scariest thing I’ve ever witnessed was a man who had a heart attack during ‘The Passion of the Christ,’” he said. “But the paramedics came right away and he ended up being OK.”
Even though security has a bigger focus for theater employees this weekend, manager Leonard Orlando said that ultimately, there’s not much they can do if someone is determined to hurt someone else.
“If someone wants to kill us, they will,” he said. “That’s the sad part.”