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Local law enforcement says 9/11 changed how we look at security

Published: Sep. 8, 2021 at 5:01 PM EDT
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - In the last 18 months, “being safe” has often been referred to during the COVID-19 pandemic.

But the upcoming 20th anniversary of the September 11, 2011 terrorist attacks on America once again is putting it in a different light.

Law enforcement people we spoke to say 9/11 changed the way we think about keeping everyone safe.

From how we fly-to how we enter public buildings-sheriff’s deputies on both sides of the river say the attacks in New York, Washington, D.C. and Pennsylvania that day forced us to choose security over certain freedoms we were used to.

But it also made more people think about their surroundings.

”People get concerned and talk about big brother and that type of thing,” said Wood County Sheriff Steve Stephens, “but there are surveillance cameras out there that have been established. There are grants for those to help protect the public from any kind of nefarious acts that could happen similar to 9/11.”

“(People) may see something strange out in the area; maybe someone taking pictures or something, and that gets reported,” said Mark Warden, Chief Deputy for the Washington County Sheriff’s office, “whereas before, it just never got reporrted. So I think it’s made the public aware of any kind of suspicious activity.”>

Both law enforcement officials agree 9/11 has led to more communications-and more cooperation-between federal, state and local agencies.

Sheriff Stephens added it’s also led to more sophisticated communication equipment.

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