The metal detectors at Amalie Arena in Tampa are there for your protection. They go off at the slightest whiff of a dangerous weapon, and staffed with security professionals who are trained to stop threats before they happened.
Or, you know, not.
Lucas Cassidy, 27, was removed from Section 320 in the arena and charged with a second-degree misdemeanor for bringing a handgun into the event.
Tampa police say a fan who saw Cassidy drop a handgun in the restroom alerted authorities who arrested him during the third period of the game.
“We would rather that it hadn’t happened, we wish it didn’t,” said Amalie Arena Vice President Mary Milne.
Asked how Cassidy got past security, Milne said it was human error.
Cassidy, she says, had set off a metal detector, but showed a staff member the keys in his pocket. With a crowd of people still waiting to get into the game, he was let through without being rechecked.
Legal notice: Don’t carry your otherwise-legal firearm in place you shouldn’t, especially in government buildings, schools and the like. That’s bad, bad juju.
That being said, have I waltzed past “No guns allowed” signs posted in private businesses while carrying? Yep.
Concealed means concealed, after all.
What this incident really shows is the utter futility of “gun free zones”. Despite a metal detector and security guard, there was a gun in the arena. Probably more than one.
Build a better mousetrap, and smarter mice will figure out ways to get the cheese.
Exit question: This incident started when a gun was dropped onto the floor and panic ensued. Would the response to this stupid accident have been different in Florida had an open carry law?