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Security stepped up in venues across Buffalo, Erie County

Security is being tightened in government and entertainment venues in the Buffalo area following recent mass shootings across the United States as well as suicide bombings in Paris and other parts of the world.

Local officials say they have not received any credible threats but that national and world events necessitate being more pro-active.

Among the steps taken:

• Police officers are now stationed near the entrance to City Hall.

• The foot bridge that connects the county Rath Building to the Main Place Mall has been closed indefinitely.

• The county executive, sheriff and other top county officials met Thursday to discuss security at other county buildings.

• Security is being beefed up at Ralph Wilson Stadium for all Buffalo Bills home games through the end of the season.

• Security was also noticeably stronger at a recent Sabres game at First Niagara Center.

Mayor Byron W. Brown said his administration has been working for some time on enhancing security in City Hall, but that recent events moved up the city’s timetable.

“Clearly, with what’s going on in the world, it’s important to accelerate the security measures we planned on implementing,” Brown said.

Sheriff Timothy B. Howard announced the beefed-up Bills security this morning. Increased manpower will include additional K9 units and uniformed and plainclothes deputies throughout the stadium and parking lots, he said.

In addition, he said, vehicles entering the Bills’ parking lots are subject to inspection.

In addition to the increased police presence, specialized security measures will be deployed in and around the stadium.

The Nov. 13 attacks in Paris by the Islamic State, prompted the initial wave of concern among Buffalo and Erie County officials, who expressed worries over security issues following Wednesday’s mass shooting in San Bernadino, California that killed 14 people and wounded 17 others.

Also in response to mass shootings nationally and internationally, the New York State Troopers Police Benevolent Association is asking state leaders for an increase in their manpower and patrol rifles.

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