NEW HAVEN, CT (WFSB) -- News of that deadly mass shooting at a California bar has many taking precautions across the country, including Connecticut.
New Haven is a city with a pretty vibrant night life, with plenty of bars, restaurants, and clubs.
It’s something police keep a close eye on, and of course, after what happened in California, they said they’ll be upping their presence Thursday night.
For college kids, the weekend begins early, as many head out on the town on Thursday nights.
“It definitely makes me nervous, sometimes me and my friends go down to Brother Jimmy’s or BAR down in New Haven, you never know what’s going to happen,” said Natasha St. Martin, a student at Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven.
In the Elm City, there are more than 90 establishments with liquor licenses, most of them downtown.
“We have and have for many, many years an established bar detail, which is a detail of officers, usually around a dozen, that are concentrated in that downtown area,” said
The New Haven Police Dept. said it will be supplementing that detail this weekend with additional officers, but adds you can also take a pro-active step yourself.
“Regardless of whether it’s a night club, movie theater, a theater, a gallery, anywhere there’s going to be a lot of people, you want to make sure you pay attention to the size of the crowd and how easy it is for you to maneuver through that crowd, how many exits are there.”
That’s something Southern Connecticut State University senior Tori Santamuro said she already does.
“I’ve been doing it for a while, especially with everything that’s been going on, but I always look for an exit, whenever I got out with my family, my friends, even if it’s something as simple as a restaurant, always looking for somewhere to go out and it’s kind of sad that we have to do that. Can’t go in and enjoy ourselves, we have to sit down and look for an exit,” she said.
An owner of a bar in New Britain said the tragedy won't necessarily change the way he does business, but it does serve a grim reminder that violence can erupt just about anywhere.
Michael Cook is the co-owner at Elmer's Place and works long hours.
Thursday hasn't been easy because Cook can't stop thinking about all of the families impacted by the California shooting.
"When I got out of the work last night about 3 a.m., I went on social media and saw it. I couldn't believe it. Just devastating to hear, thinking that someone could do that," said Cook.
The tragedy hits home for Cook because the bar in Thousand Oaks caters to college kids, just like Elmer's.
Central Connecticut State University students say the shooting is a painful reminder that you can't be completely safe anywhere.
"Never feel completely comfortable at a place you are because there's always a change that something's going on," said Jay Congdon.
Channel 3 also reached out to Hartford Police who said that officers are trained in active shooter scenarios no matter where they occur, whether it be a school, church, bar, workplace, etc.
Hartford officers also also constantly briefed upon recent incident that occur across the country, including the Thousand Oaks, CA shooting.
Police said they want folks to go out and have a good time, but to remember to be aware of your surroundings.