Parents speak out about safety at Riverchase Galleria

Published: Aug. 6, 2019 at 9:53 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Tuesday’s National Night Out event in Hoover was held at the Riverchase Galleria, possibly as a way to get people comfortable with coming back again.

But parents I spoke with have a few ideas about how to make it safer.

“We want them to come out and have positive interactions with our police, fire, other first responders,” says Officer Brian Hale with Hoover Police Department.

Looking around, folks were having fun, but the recent shootings that took place nearby were on more than a few minds.

“There seems to be lots of extra, well, dangerous traffic in the mall lately,” says Andrea Lilly.

Lilly was coming to the mall just to eat Saturday when they got a notification about that day’s shooting. She admits tonight is the first time she has brought her children to the Galleria since before Thanksgiving. I asked what would make it better.

“Maybe more police presence in the parking decks and in the mall,” says Lilly.

Donna Miller is the mother of a four-year-old and has a different take on what safety means in terms of the police force.

“I don’t think it’s necessarily incumbent upon them to make it safer. I just think it’s society in general right now and how you choose to run your errands,” says Miller.

Officer Brian Hale says they are talking with city and mall officials about what to do going forward.

“Crime prevention it’s always fluid, trying to figure out the current trends and how to prevent this type of crime,” says Hale.

He says they have talked about extra cameras. The mall also currently hires off-duty officers to come in Thursday through Sunday. There is talk of increasing the number of officers.

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