Free Consulation

Call 866-629-3757

Aurora Tragedy highlights the need to properly secure all public venues

Aurora Tragedy highlights the need to properly secure all public venues

While we collectively mourn the loss of innocent lives at the multiplex theatre in Aurora, the overriding question as to how we can prevent further active shooter incidents from occurring is foremost in our minds. Some continue call for stricter gun control rather than face the reality that the vast majority of registered gun owners are responsible citizens. In order to protect us from the few, mostly deranged, individuals who perpetrate these horrific crimes, we have to look back retrospectively, putting our emotions aside, and look at the facts surrounding these incidents.

Century 16 Theater, Aurora, ColoradoHistory shows that active shooters attack victims rapidly once an incident begins, shooting 3, 4, or more people per minute. The offender at Virginia Tech fired 170 rounds in about ten minutes, or roughly one shot every 4 seconds. The May 8, 2009 issue of the Force Science News reported that, in a study of nearly 100 active shooter incidents, Ohio police training academy manager Ron Borsch found that the killers deliberately race to complete their slaughters before police arrive, and do so in a post-Columbine average time of just 8 minutes. He also found that police intervention stopped the killing in just 6 cases out of that group – a 6% success rate.

These facts are sobering. In 8 minutes, over 20 people can easily be shot. The very low successful police intervention rate is due to the reality that very few police agencies can process the calls, travel to the scene, and take effective action within that time frame. It wasn’t done successfully at Virginia Tech, even with a full SWAT team on alert, suited up, and standing by when the incident occurred. Preparedness just doesn’t get any better than that, except by accident when an officer happens to be in just the right place at exactly the right time.

This data also raises another serious issue. One could and should question whether a facility emergency action plan that fails to limit casualties over 90% of the time meets the legal requirement to provide a safe and secure environment, especially for places of mass gatherings such as a multiplex theatre or concert venue.

Putting tools and methods aside for a moment, the issue here is essentially a time problem. The most frequently employed solution almost never has a positive effect on the number of casualties because it can’t be brought to the scene and delivered within the offender’s operational time frame. Overwhelming force delivered too late doesn’t save lives.

So what practical solution can we use to thwart an active shooter incident?

It would be my considered opinion that the most reasonable option to preclude or prevent these types of attacks would be to employ and adopt the same tri-level security models used in airport terminals, sport venues and high profile facilities. All theater goes would be required to submit to personal screening and monitoring. This model would mandate all doors or ingress/egress points at the facility be manned or monitored at all times. Employees and certified security personnel would undergo required training in safety, security and emergency management. Local Law enforcement and Emergency Responders would visit each facility, secure facility plot plans, and conduct mock drills and tabletop exercises to pre-visualize an operational environment.

The key elements here are planning; training, and true to life exercises that validate the Facility Emergency Action Plan with policies and procedures that adhere to Federal and State Standards, including NFPA 1600 and OSHA 29 CFR 1910.38. Practice sessions and testing of the FEAP needs to occur at least semi-annually.

Having over thirty years experience as a Licensed Security Consultant, I understand and appreciate issues of inconvenience to the public as well as resistance to the indignities inherent in personal screening and monitoring.
Security measures, by their very nature, don’t comport with convenience but they are necessary to protect us from those who would do us harm.

With this in mind, we must demand that the owners and managers of any place of mass gathering develop a site specific comprehensive Facility Emergency Action Plan; provide security, safety and emergency management training to all employees; work with Security Professionals, Local and State Law Enforcement agencies, and adopt policies and procedures to deter and prevent tragedies like Aurora from happening in the future.


Tags: ,

Call 1-866-629-3757 for expert, discreet private investigation and security consulting services.

Click here to visit Jennings Smith Investigations, Inc. on Twitter. Click here to visit the Private Investigator Blog. Click here for the Private Investigator Blog RSS Feed.
  • Jennings Smith Associates Professional Certifications

    • Professional Certified Investigator (PCI), ASIS International
    • Certified Protection Professional (CPP), ASIS International
    • Physical Security Professional (PSP), ASIS International
    • Certified Homeland Security Level 5 (CHS-V), American Board for Certification in Homeland Security
    • Certified Business Continuity Professional (CBCP), Disaster Recovery Institute International
    • Certified Healthcare Safety Professional (CHSP), Board of Certified Hazard Control Management
    • Certified Healthcare Emergency Professional (CHEP), Board of Certified Hazard Control Management
    • Certified Safety & Health Manager (CSHM), Institute for Safety and Health Management
    • Certified Hazard Control Manager (CHCM), Board of Certified Hazard Control Management
    • Certified Forensic Consultant (CFC), American College of Forensic Examiners International

    Certifications Continued


    Cyber Forensic Investigations

    JSA's cybersecurity experts are ready to assist you with a complete array of cybercrime protection, data recovery, and evidence collection services. Cyber forensic Investigations include: unauthorized data access; PII (personal identifiable information) exposure; IP (intellectual property/proprietary information) theft; employee social media/email/messaging abuse; ransomware data corruption; and more.

    Cyber Forensics Continued

  • Share

  • Major Credit Cards Accepted