Dover Leaders Say Incident Highlights Need for Better Security a - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Dover Leaders Say Incident Highlights Need for Better Security at City Hall

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DOVER, Del. (WBOC) - Dover city leaders say a recent incident at city hall is highlighting the need for better security for the building.

According to a probable cause affidavit, back in October police got a report that a man was making very serious threats at the city building on Reed Street.

The document says there Raymond Vincent, of Greenwood, threatened to shoot the state fire marshal and blow up the city fire marshal, and then he made his way to city hall.

"A gentleman came to the door. He wanted to come in. He wanted to speak to the city manager," said Yvonne Martin, administrative assistant to the mayor and city manager. "He was standing right here in front of my desk. I was taking notes. All of the sudden, two city fire marshals came into the office."

They took him into custody.

Dave Bonar, president of the Dover City Council, says the incident shines a light on an inadequate security system at city hall.

"It's just a matter of being concerned for the safety of employees in city government, as well as people who come to visit city offices," Bonar said.

Right now, people have unfettered access to almost all of city hall. In fact, the most secure section is actually the area that has the mayor and manager's offices.

"What we would do is improve security for the rest of the city hall offices that are located in there," Bonar said. "You'd have to gain access to get past the initial lobby area."

And he says events like a deadly shooting in Pennsylvania over the summer shows the importance of security in city council chambers itself.

"People have been shot and injured or killed by people who are disgruntled. We don't want to take that chance with our council or staff at those meetings."

Bonar says the public needs easy access to city hall but points out buildings like Legislative Hall and Kent County Courthouse both have metal detectors at their fronts for visitors.

This look at city hall security is part of a larger examination of the future of multiple Dover city buildings, like the old library. Bonar, along with Scott Koenig, Dover's city manager, says eventually a new city hall will be necessary. That idea could cost $10-17 million.

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