Large bags banned from Cinemark theaters due to safety concerns

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COLLEGE STATION, Tex. (KBTX)- Starting on Feb. 22nd, movie goers will not be allowed to bring large bags into Cinemark theaters. The new rule bans bags or any packages larger than 12" x 12" x 6", with the exception of medical and diaper bags, in an effort to enhance safety and security for both guests and staff.

"I think it will probably be happening in a lot of different places now. I think more people will be upping their policies and securities and stuff like that," said moviegoer Chris Thorpe.

"I mean they have had killings in the malls, and movie theaters as well, like in Colorado, so, it's all over the world these days," said Freddie Holmes. He and others believe this rule should have been implemented years ago.

"I'm a protector of my children, and that is very mandatory to take that type of precautions, and maybe that is something that they should have been doing in the past and would've prevented a lot to this day," said Holmes.

Danny Davis, with the Bush School of Government and Public Service, said Cinemark's new rule is the first step in increasing safety.

"We got to step up and do what's needed and I think security at a local level, that's a great start. Public safety is a local government responsibility. That's who's responsible for it, not the state and not the Feds," said Davis.

Checking bags isn't the only thing Davis believes should be implemented.

"Video surveillance is necessary. Yeah, it would cost extra money, but you know active monitoring of video surveillance is probably something that needs to be done, as opposed to using it as a record for something that happened," said Davis.

"There are so many ways on getting things in, whether it's a clear bag or not, there's just so many ways, so you just really have to think about other means as far as security," said Holmes.

Davis said every citizen should be thinking about their own security and safety, regardless of where they are at.

"I think anywhere that there is a public venue, you've got to be able to take care of yourself for about 15-20 minutes because it can take that long for the police to come in and restore order," said Davis.

Any bag that guests bring inside the theater are subject to be searched by staff to ensure the safety of all guests. More information about Cinemark's bag and package rule is available in the Related Links section at the top of this article.