Editor's Note: This article was updated at 2 p.m. Friday to include a response from the Culver City Police Department.
A slow, but steady stream of ‘Batman’ aficionados headed to Pacific Culver Stadium 12 for the 10:10 a.m. screening of The Dark Knight Rises on Friday morning.
Everybody Patch spoke with had heard about the Aurora, Colorado shootings and while some said they had security concerns, others remained completely unfazed.
Forty-year-old Taylor brought her 16-year-old daughter Kristen to see the movie and both said they had no fears whatsoever.
“It happened in Colorado, not California,” Kristen said. “I feel totally safe.”
Britney Young 24, and her friend Adriana Granados, 25, had a completely different reaction. Both said they had real concerns when they heard the news.
“I feel like it could happen in any movie theatre in any city,” said Young. “That’s what makes it so scary. But,” she added, “We can’t let crazy people ruin our summer.”
“It was just a random, horrible, senseless act,” said Granados.
Jose, 27, said he definitely thought twice about whether or not to show up.
“I woke up this morning and saw it all over the news. It was horrible,” he said. But having promised to come to the movie with his brother and 9-year-old nephew who had no knowledge of the shootings, Jose said he “decided to come anyway. I’m sure it’ll be fine,” he added, before heading off to buy popcorn for his nephew.
Tito, 23, strode into the theatre wearing a Batman T-shirt, accompanied by his little brother and his friend.
“Yeah, it did scare me a little,” he said, when he heard about the shooting. “But I figured it was so unlikely the same thing would happen twice or that it would happen during the day.”
Nick, 24, had a similar sentiment. “It’s such a slim chance that this would happen again,” he said, adding he didn’t hesitate to come to the cinema Friday morning.
Stephanie, 20, works at the theatre. She was busy selling tickets and filling up popcorn containers, but while she felt terrible when she heard the news this morning, she wasn’t worried about turning up for her shift.
“But my mom called this morning and told me to stay home because she didn’t think it was safe. I just told her everything was fine and I was working in the daytime anyway.”
There was no visible increased security presence outside the theatres Friday morning but Culver City Police Lt. Ron Iizuka told Patch they will be adding additional security downtown and will be checking in with the theatre to make sure everything is okay.
"As usual, we're telling the public to be vigilant, and report anything suspicious," Iizuka said.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department also issued a statement saying it was beefing up security throughout the county at theatres and public venues.
"While the tragedy in Aurora, Colorado appears to be an isolated incident, our vigilance has been raised," said Captain Mike Parker, Sheriff's Headquarters Bureau. "The heightened alert of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department includes increased patrols to create a more visible presence at movie theaters and other places where people congregate."
"As always, we encourage the public: 'If You See Something, Say Something.' The greatest deterrent to crime is often a phone call to law enforcement by a person who sees something that just doesn't look right."