Regal Cinemas now checking bags before entry into theaters

New corporate security policy comes after recent theater shootings

WINTER PARK, Fla. - Debate is brewing over a major security change to protect you at the movies.

Local 6 has learned in response to the recent attacks at theaters across the country, Regal Cinemas is now searching customers before allowing anyone inside.

A printed sign hangs in the front ticket counter at Regal Cinemas Winter Park Village 20 alerting customers to the change.

The sign reads, "For the safety and comfort of all our guests: Backpacks and bags of any kind are subject to inspection prior to entry to this facility."

The manager confirms this is a new corporate security policy. Workers said it comes after the recent spat of theater shootings; one in Lafayette, Louisiana and another outside Nashville, Tennessee.

It's a policy change that some welcome, with some guests saying bags are also checked at places like Walt Disney World and college football games.

"It's probably just a reaction, and then as time goes on, they'll just stop doing it eventually," Alexandra Hernandez said.

On Regal's Facebook page, backlash came quickly from across the country with some complaining about medical safety issues, and others about conceal carry gun rights.

One woman posted on the company's Facebook page, "Just returned 2 movie tickets because ticket collector wanted to check my bag for a gun... Didn't ask to frisk my husband who was also carrying so i guess your policy isn't flawless."

On its Web page, the company wrote, "We acknowledge that this procedure can cause some inconvenience and that it is not without flaws, but hope these are minor in comparison to increased safety."

The question is how this new policy is being implemented. Local 6 observed several groups of women with large bags and purses who were not checked.

By the time of this report, the company did not return a call seeking answers to Local 6's questions.

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