Authorities in Van Buren are working to make the Municipal Complex safer. This is after a shooting just the down the road caused some big concerns.
” That final push guys this is the time and let’s move, and we have been going as quickly as we can to get it set up,” said the Mayor of Van Buren Bob Freeman.
Beginning Monday (July 21), citizens will have to go through a metal detector when entering City Hall. ” They will come through and we will have a body scanner and an X-ray machine,” said Freeman.
This all came about after police say a man, armed with an assault rifle shot several rounds off inside the Crawford County Courthouse back in 2011. This caused the Mayor to start looking at the security of those inside City Hall.
” The judge is also doing other actions such as custody hearings, doing divorces, ” according to Freeman. ” It’s just that increase threat that we have seen, not only across the country, but here in Crawford County.”
The Mayor and law enforcement officials said they knew security was needed. Freeman said its an inconvenience for the public, however, they have to think of the safety of their employees and the individuals that come in.
According to Lt. Stephen Staggs, ” We hope to be proactive and prevent anything bad at all happening here at the complex, prevent any citizens or any employees becoming injured as result of some incident.”
Sgt. Larry Brown will be the officer in charge of making sure the building is safe. ” My job is used to when people enter the building and they go walk through the metal detector and if there is any indication that they might have something on them, we will further screen them,” said Brown.
Officials said this is a step that they have to take to make sure everyone is safe.