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New Details After Shots Fired At Twins Bar; Armed Guards Not Common

Updated: 02/17/2014 9:56 PM
Created: 02/17/2014 5:30 PM WDIO.com
By: Laurie Stribling
lstribling@wdio.com

New details were released about the shots fired outside the Twins Bar over the weekend. Police said the armed security guard who fired two rounds was a retired Duluth Police officer.

Public Information Officer Jim Hansen said 73-year-old Allen Butler was the armed guard staffed by Twins Bar. Hansen said armed guards at Duluth bars are unusual, but there are some.

Hansen said armed security guards are more common during events like street dances or concerts.

The incident happened early Sunday morning outside Twins Bar. Police said a fight was reported outside and shots were fired.

Officials said Butler saw a suspect with a gun in his hand. When Butler asked the suspect to drop the weapon, Butler told police the suspect pointed the gun. That's when Butler fired one round.

Police said the suspect took off north on 5th Avenue East and pointed the gun a second time at Butler. That's when police said Butler fired a second round.

A firearms safety expert weighed in on having guns in bars. Saginaw Firearms President Frank Le Fevre said generally they don't mix.

"I think it's extremely dangerous to have a firearm in a bar," Le Fevre said. "You have people who sometimes have a little too much to drink, sometimes they get a little rambunctious."

Le Fevre said he was also surprised to hear the Twins Bar has a staffed armed guard.

"I don't know what their history is to warrant that, but they may very well have a reason to have that," Le Fevre said.

While police haven't said Butler did anything wrong, several people were reported at the scene by police. Le Fevre said that's concerning.

"Anytime you fire a firearm you are responsible for where that bullet stops," Le Fevre said. "So, if there is a group of people and you discharge a firearm, I don't think that's right."

Several workers at other Duluth bars told Eyewitness News they do not have armed guards on staff. Hansen said it's more common for bars to hire a licensed police officer.

Police are still searching for the suspect.

Eyewitness News contacted the Twins Bar for comment. Workers referred us to the owner and we have not heard back.

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