Police: Deadly party lacked proper security
BAKER - One teen said Monday she was standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the shooter in Baker when he opened fire at a birthday party Friday night, killing three teens and wounding another.
"You see that type of stuff on the movies and stuff, but you would never think that it could actually happen to you," said the witness. "The two dudes that was beside him was looking at him, one starting demonstrating with their hands like they were shooting him, and that's when they laughed about it and that's when they actually opened fire and started shooting."
Baker Police Chief Mike Knaps says between 75-100 teens attended the birthday party at the privately-owned Baker Civic Club. With only two hired security guards, police feel the party lacked supervision.
"Certainly they're not certified law enforcement officers, and they also have no police authority when they come into this city. So I would say they're definitely not qualified," said Knaps.
The owners of the Baker Civic Club told News 2 on the phone that they highly recommend police presence at large parties held at the club. The owners would not disclose who rented out the club for the party Friday night.
"A recommendation is a suggestive thought. It needs to be a policy. They need to have it in their contract that when they determine it's necessary that you will have security or you won't rent their building," said Knaps.
The witness we spoke with says she should have left the party after seeing multiple fights. She says police presence may have made a difference.
"If they would have hired real police officers, the police officers would have probably made us go home from all the fights that was happening. The security had to repeatedly come in there for the fights," she said.
The owners of the club say they plan to discuss security requirements soon. They also plan to host a violence awareness event at the Baker Civic Club. If you would like to participate in that event contact Hazel Mitchell at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 225-223-3087.