A recent scare at the movie theater in Eden Prairie was a hot topic on Twitter and the talk of the local mall on Tuesday after a man wore military style clothing to the AMC -- and he tells Fox 9 News why he did.
With other recent incidents at movie theaters across the nation, it may not seem surprising to learn a man sporting military fatigues was questioned -- but he never expected he would be stopped at gunpoint by police who thought he could be a threat.
With so many rumors circulating, the man who went to see "Lone Survivor" tells Fox 9 News he wants to set the record straight -- but to avoid future attention, he asked to have his face hidden.
"Ever since we saw the previews come out for it, we are like, 'We have got to go see that,'" he recalled.
The trailer that showcases "Lone Survivor" gives a glimpse into film that follows a band of brothers at arms.
"I'm a very, very proud, patriotic American," he said.
As a man who shows his pride in front of his home, he also wanted to wear military style clothing to honor his friends who served and are still serving.
"I have a tremendous level of respect for all of our veterans -- everyone who serves, great appreciation for the sacrifices they have made," he explained.
However, he never expected his expression would be met with fear.
"We hear a voice from behind us, 'Hey guys! Hold up a second!'" he recalled. "Turn and look back, and there's an Eden Prairie police officer armed and going, 'Hey! Put your hands up!'"
The incident caused enough commotion that it spilled over into social media, with many concerned about what was happening.
"We turned around and people were making a commotion," Emily Goldnick recalled. "We saw people start running out of the theater."
Goldnick was walking out of "Lone Survivor" when she saw the scene unfold before her, and she admits her first thoughts turned to Aurora, Colo.
"People were worried," she assessed.
In the end, the man whose apparel caused the alarm was able to tell officers he simply intended to view the movie. He also clarified that there was no physical force used at all during the encounter.
"The only physical contact there was, I actually requested," he explained, adding that he asked officers to pat him down and search him to prove his intent.
When asked if he realizes why the police reacted the way they did, he admits that he does "get it," and understand why many were worried about it. Even so, he says he believes "it shouldn't be that way."
When all was said and done, he did get to see his movie. Now, he hopes that instead of focusing on what he did, people will instead attend what he calls the safest theater in the state.
"Within moments, there were half a dozen officers," he said. "I have to say, that's incredible -- the response and how prepared and ready those guys are even though there was no threat. That's amazing."
WHBQ-TV | Fox 13
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