Oakdale Theatre holds first event since deadly shooting

- FILE - Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford (Image: Oakdale.com)

WALLINGFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — On Friday night, the Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford hosted its first event since a deadly shooting took place outside of the venue last month. Extra steps were taken to ensure the safety of all concert-goers.

Original Story: 2 dead, 2 wounded in shooting at Wallingford’s Oakdale Theatre

The Wallingford Police Department tells News 8 that the chief has been working with management at the Oakdale when it comes to security at events.

“We’re going to do it on a show by show basis, determine what we think is appropriate for extra man power,” said Lt. Cheryl Bradley with the Wallingford Police Department. “We are supplementing their security team.”

Related Content: Investigation into Oakdale shooting that left two dead continues

Friday’s show, called Hyperglow, is like a dance party with art and body painting.

Dan Schumann went to the show with some friends. He had been to Hyperglow before and was looking forward to the show.

“It’s a lot of fun. It’s like a giant party,” said Schumann. “Everyone just hangs out with each other.”

Related Content: New Haven woman grieving loss after cousin dies outside Meek Mill concert in Wallingford

The last major event at the Oakdale Theatre was a concert put on by rapper Meek Mill on December 30. Just after 11:00 p.m. that night, shots were fired in the parking lot.

Related Content: Oakdale Theatre shooting victim, Jaquan Graves wanted to be a rapper & loved his son

Four men were shot. Thirty-one year old Travis Ward and 20-year-old Jacquan Graves, both of New Haven, died. The two other men who were shot survived. Police believe those two were not directly involved in the shooting.

There were several police officers at the Hyperglow show, just in case. Police and theatre management are hoping the extra security will deter anyone looking to start trouble. People attending Friday’s show were thinking about what happened at the Meek Mill concert.

“It’s a little shaky to hear it, but I was hearing that they’re stepping up the security,” said Vinny Penisse of Southington. “It still worries me a little bit.”

On the night of the shooting, the Oakdale Theatre did request for a police officer to be at the concert, but that request was made only a few hours before the concert took place. No officers were available on such short notice.

Many people attending the Hyperglow show were glad there were extra police officers there.

“I think they’ve definitely heightened security measures and I’m honestly not really worried about it,” said Nathan Desroberts of Higganum. “We’re getting picked up, we’re not driving ourselves.”

As of right now no arrests have been made. Police are also trying to figure out the motive and if there was more than one shooter. The investigation is ongoing.

“It’s still actively being pursued,” said Lt. Bradley. “They’re doing a lot of follow ups and that’s the most I can say at this time.”

Related Content: Police continue search for killer in Oakdale double murder

A spokesperson for the theatre gave News 8 a statement saying,
“We don’t reveal our security measures, that those measures change show-to-show and at all of our venues we work closely with local law enforcement on security matters.”