Police departments in New York are among several major cities that are ramping up police patrols amid concerns as “The Joker” film opens up nationwide on Thursday night, Oct. 3.
Starring Joaquin Phoenix as Arther Fleck, “a man disregarded by society” who slowly transforms into the comic-book madman, police are taking extra precautions to ensure that nothing happens similar to the 2012 Aurora, Colorado shootings during a midnight screen of the Batman film “The Dark Knight.”
According to the official synopsis for “The Joker:”
“Forever alone in a crowd, failed comedian Arthur Fleck seeks connection as he walks the streets of Gotham City. Arthur wears two masks -- the one he paints for his day job as a clown, and the guise he projects in a futile attempt to feel like he's part of the world around him. Isolated, bullied and disregarded by society, Fleck begins a slow descent into madness as he transforms into the criminal mastermind known as the Joker.”
In the Hudson Valley, local agencies have made preparations of their own in advance of the release of the much-anticipated movie.
“Out of an abundance of caution and for the safety of our residents, police office will be assigned to theater locations,” the Yonkers Police Department noted. “Moviegoers are also advised that theater management will not be allowing patrons in wearing face-masks, face-paintings and patrons can expect random bag searches and unaccompanied minors will not be allowed into the R-rated movie.”
The NYPD said that “this is a 360-degree policing approach to ensure safety for ticket buyers in their seats, as well as on the streets. If something happens inside one of the screenings, we intend to be able to pacify the situation quickly and conclusively,” the well-placed source added, noting that large-scale and security-hefty events go off without a hitch in New York every day.”
On July 20, 2012, dressed in tactical gear, James Holmes set off tear grass grenades and shot into a full audience at a midnight showing of “The Dark Knight Rises.” In total, 12 people were killed and 70 others injured. At the time, it was the largest mass shooting in the nation’s history.
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