Carmike Cinemas President and Chief Executive Officer David Passman began a conference call Monday with Wall Street analysts who follow his company by expressing sympathy for victims of last Thursday’s movie theater shooting in Lafayette, La.
“First, on behalf of the entire Carmike family, I want to express how deeply saddened we are about the tragic incident that took place in Lafayette, La., last week, and express our deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of the victims, and the members of the local community,” the said. “We also want to express our gratitude to the first responders, as well as theater personnel for quickly and professionally dealing with the situation.”
The gunman in the mass shooting was John Russell “Rusty” Houser, a longtime resident of Columbus and Phenix City. Police called him a “drifter” and said he had been staying at a Motel 6 in Lafayette since early July, before purchasing a ticket to the movie, “Trainwreck,” and opening fire early in its showing, killing two young women and wounding nine others.
Columbus-based Carmike operates 271 theaters with 2,884 screens in 41 states, but none of those are in Louisiana. Locally, it has three theaters in Columbus and another on Fort Benning.