Casinos taking advantage of state troopers' shooter training

Casinos taking advantage of state troopers' shooter training

SHREVEPORT-BOSSIER CITY, LA (KSLA) - In the wake of the tragic shootings, some ArkLaTex casinos told KSLA they've already taken advantage of active shooter training provided by Louisiana State Police.

Troopers also told KSLA they will one day add more training to stop gunmen like 64-year-old Stephen Paddock from killing 59 people and wounding 527 others from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay casino hotel in Las Vegas.

"Our scenarios didn't include somebody shooting from an elevated area but it did include the same type of firearm and stuff like that so what we do is we try to create similar situations either based off of something that's happened in the past or something that could happen and be as proactive as we can as a law enforcement agency," said TFC Matt Harris with Louisiana State Police Troop G.

According to Harris, LSP stands ready to work with local casino security personnel and police departments to prevent active shooter situations, especially with some of Shreveport-Bossier's towering casinos standing over large gathering placed like Festival Plaza.

"Anytime you have something take place of that magnitude, law enforcement officers across the country will band together and they will create training, agencies will create training, to mimic this event so that we can be prepared if something like this were to happen again," said Harris.

The chairman of the Louisiana Gaming Control Board, Ronnie Jones, said he's not yet aware of any new notices being sent out to state casinos to review their security or weapons policies.

Jones told KSLA he's currently in Las Vegas and is alright but was too tied up with meetings with other gaming control boards to comment.

Bossier City Public Information Officer Mark Natale said beefing up security is a decision each individual casino would have to make. According to Natale, BCPD has not been called to reinforce security anywhere.

KSLA reached out to local casinos to ask if more security had been added.

The general manager of the Margaritaville Resort Casino in Bossier City, Barry Regula, said his security personnel has already taken advantage of LSP's active shooter training.

In a statement sent to KSLA, Regular wrote:

"In light of other incidents of violence around the country and the world, Margaritaville proactively worked in coordination with the State Police and local authorities to train our crew members this summer in "Active Shooter" scenarios. The safety of our guests and crew members is of the utmost importance to us, and we deploy our Security resources as best we can to have an active and visible presence. We are devastated by the news of the tragedy in Las Vegas and send our heartfelt condolences to the injured and families of those lost."

Of all of the other local casinos KSLA contacted, only officials at El Dorado Casino in Shreveport responded, declining to comment.

Shreveport Police told KSLA the standard amount of security will remain in place at the Red River Revel, consisting of 23 officers during weekdays, 33 officers on weeknights and 36 officers over the weekend.

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