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Local Movie Theaters Up Security, Ban Masks

By Christy Andrews
Published On: Jul 23 2012 05:59:01 PM CDT
Updated On: Jul 23 2012 10:14:53 PM CDT
NEW BERN -

Several theaters across Eastern Carolina have placed bans on wearing masks and costumes inside the theater in the wake of the deadly movie theater massacre in Colorado this past Friday.  That shooting killed 12 people and injured 58 others.

"I definitely think that this will be an event that will change how we look at this business a little bit," Mitchell Brydge, owner of Bear Town Cinema in New Bern, said.

The cinema implemented the ban on masks Monday as an extra safety precaution. The ban is expected to be permanent.

"I think that would be a move just to make everyone feel comfortable, both employees and customers," Brydge said.

The cinema is also looking into adding a lock-down plan in the case of a shooter situation.  Brydge said they've never had any incidents in the past, but the recent shooting is a reminder the importance of security and being prepared.

"It's crazy to think that you have to think about somebody coming in a business and shooting people, but the world is a different place now unfortunately," Brydge said.

Greenville Grand Cinema in Greenville and Carmike Cinema in Havelock have also banned costumes and masks from their theaters.   It's not clear if the bans there are permanent or temporary.