East Texan says banning guns won't make theaters safer - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

East Texan says banning guns won't make theaters safer

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Signs outside an East Texas movie theater are making some movie-goers uneasy. The signs are meant to keep all guns out of the theaters, but some patrons don't think that it's the right approach to safety.

The signs have a message for those with their concealed handgun licenses-- guns, regardless of licensing and training, are not allowed.

"What this sign is going to do is, it's going set a target on this business. I'd hate to see something happen like what happened in Colorado, happen here in Texas," says Joseph Williams.

Williams says he always carries his gun for protection. After seeing the signs, he voiced his concerns to Carmike's corporate offices.

"They have the greatest intention. Their intention is to keep crime and firearms out of their business. The only problem is, what this sign is going to do is show the criminal that there's no one inside to stop them," says Williams.

Williams says on Monday, the Carmike headquarters told him that the signs were meant to keep guns out of theaters in open carry states, where patrons had reported feeling uncomfortable.

Our television cameras aren't allowed inside the Tyler theater, nor does corporate allow local mangers to speak with the media. However, inside the lobby, there is a sign posted explaining to movie goers that bags and backpacks are subject to search.

"I think all bags should be searched anyway. Especially with the crime rates and everything," says Leann May.

Leann and her children were at the theater Tuesday. She says she thinks theatres would be safer with more gun-toting, law-abiding citizens inside.

"I think they should be allowed to if they have a concealed handgun license," she says.

"I think that we should be proactive and not reactive. We need to stand up for this and we need to get this sign down before we're grieving over something that happened in our own neighborhood. Let's stand together and get this down before something happens," says Williams.

We spoke with the Carmike corporate offices twice by phone Tuesday. A spokesperson said they did not have a statement to release to us.

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