Downtown Steamboat Springs theater searched after nationwide bomb threat
August 17, 2012
Steamboat Springs — Police searched a downtown Steamboat Springs movie theater Friday morning after the theater's corporate office in Georgia received a bomb threat.
Steamboat Springs Police Department officer Kristin Bantle said nothing suspicious was found after a search of the theater, which was not open when the search occurred.
"Everything was locked up tight," Bantle said.
Chief Plaza Theater manager Leah Helme said the theater opened as usual at 2 p.m., and police conducted extra patrols at the theater Friday.
Chief Plaza was one of many theaters that were searched across the country after someone phoned in a bomb threat to the corporate headquarters of Carmike Cinemas. No bombs were found.
According to the company's website, Carmike has 236 theaters in 35 states, including six in Colorado.
Carmike officials alerted the FBI after discovering the threat in a voicemail message Friday morning, company spokesman Terrell Mayton told the Associated Press. He said the call was placed after hours Thursday by someone claiming to work for a contractor that provides janitorial services to Carmike.
While Mayton wouldn’t discuss specifics of the call with the Associated Press, police in Columbus, Ga., said the person referenced the Sylvester Stallone movie “The Expendables 2,” which opened Friday. The movie is not being shown at the Chief Plaza Theater in Steamboat.
“It sounded like a disgruntled worker,” Columbus police Lt. Bill Rawn told the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer. He said the caller said, “You don’t pay us enough. You cut back our hours. We’re not expendable. We’ll show you we’re not expendable.'”
Mayton told the Associated Press that the caller outlined “some specifics to a bomb threat at certain locations” but that he did not know how many theaters were mentioned or in how many states. He said most theaters were cleared to open before their first showtimes Friday.
A spokesman for the FBI in Atlanta said the agency is investigating, the Associated Press reported.
The scare Friday came nearly a month after the July 20 Aurora shooting that killed 12 and injured 58.
To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247 or email mstensland@SteamboatToday.com