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Bridgeport To Put Police Shooting Range Next To School, Parents Upset

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One parent in the crowd shouted and waved her hands, “Bridgeport people care! We are tired of being stepped on– do you understand?”

Furious parents attended an informational meeting with Mayor Bill Finch at the Cesar Batalla School for students  K through 8 in Bridgeport Friday morning.

The mayor said, ” I don’t hide things.”

A parent in the crowd interrupted, “Why were we never told anything then?”

Residents say they only just recently learned about plans to renovate the Westside police precinct station and turn it into an indoor practice firing facility.

Maria Martinez has a granddaughter that attends Cesar Basalla, across the street from the proposed facility, “We already have a prison in front of Central high school and now we want to put a shooting range in front of Cesar Batalla?  What message are we sending to these kids? “

The proposed Richard Goodwin Memorial training facility would be inside the Westside precinct.

Much closer than the Monroe facility police currently use.

The 6,000 square foot bullet-proof, sound-proof building would house ten firing lanes.

It’s currently gutted and awaiting renovations, but the mayor says it is not a done deal, “A lot of emotion, people are very concerned about school security as am I.  I’m a school parent.  I listened closely and we are going to reevaluate the location and try to find something that keeps the parents happy.”

The Mayor said he will schedule future informational meetings to address community concerns.

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