Columbiana Center in SC adds gun detector dog to security


After a shooting and melee at the Columbiana Center mall on April 16 that injured 15 people, the mall owner added a specially trained firearms detection dog to his security team.

Shoppers and employees can expect to see Carlos patrolling the mall in Harbison’s popular shopping and entertainment district.

In April, the German Shepherd joined the mall’s security partner, Services Andy FrainColumbiana Center spokeswoman Rachel Wille told The State on Thursday.

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Carlos is a specially trained firearms detector dog who now patrols the Columbiana Center. Submitted Brookfield Properties

Buyers likely won’t know that Carlos, known among handlers for his friendly demeanor, scanned them for firearms, Wille said in a news release.

Firearms are strictly prohibited at the Columbiana Center, which is privately owned by Brookfield Properties.

With the ability to detect firearms, Carlos will patrol the mall with his handler to deter the possession of these weapons, and any that are brought onto the property will be quickly and safely removed.

“We share our community’s concerns following the recent incidents, which led to the decision to implement this new safety measure,” Columbiana Center Executive Director Taryn Trefethen-Boileau said in the statement. “Nothing is more important to us than the well-being of our customers, tenants and employees. Our goal is to create the safest environment possible and we hope this action will help us move forward together.

Columbiana Center shopping mall in Irmo. Tracy Glantz [email protected]

Columbiana Center hosts millions of guests a year and provides thousands of retail associate jobs, according to the release.

The Columbia Police Department said on April 16, three men came to the mall with guns and exchanged gunfire. Nine people were shot and six others were injured as people fled the gunfire. The victims were between the ages of 15 and 73, police said.

None of the victims injured in the shooting and melee died.

Marquise Love Robinson, 20, Amari Sincere-Jamal Smith, 21, and Jewayne M. Price, 22, were each charged with attempted murder, unlawful carrying of a pistol and nine counts of assault and bodily harm of a serious and aggravated nature, police said. . All three have been denied bail and are currently locked up in the Lexington County Detention Center.

Serving as a community center is a privilege taken seriously by the mall’s owners, they said. They believe that adding the trained dog to Shallow Stream Kennels will improve the safety of everyone in the mall. Shallow Creek is known to train police dogs, the statement said.

“Our extensive training program draws on years of law enforcement experience to ensure the highest quality of service, safety and dog care. Weapons detection and deterrence are an essential part of safety and prevention,” Shallow Creek Kennels owner John Brannon said in the release. “Our involvement in mall safety has been a natural collaboration, and we are honored to be a trusted resource to help support customers, merchants and mall management.”

In addition to Carlos, Columbiana Center shoppers should expect to see increased security and a greater police presence at the mall, spokeswoman Lindsay Kahn said in April.

Mall officials said Columbiana Center has no plans to add metal detectors at this time.


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This story was originally published May 19, 2022 3:51 p.m.

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Noah Feit is a live reporter with The State who focuses on breaking news, public safety and emerging trends. The award-winning journalist has worked for several newspapers since the start of his career in 1999.
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