Longtime Comic-Con fan asks for ban on costumes

Posted at 5:00 PM, Jul 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-19 16:14:00-04

10News Reporter Jeff Lasky | 10News Digital Producer Stacy Haynes | On Facebook | On Twitter | On Snapchat: @abc10news | On InstagramOn Our Mobile App | Online

A longtime Comic-Con fan said he believes costumes should be banned at the pop culture convention in light of recent events.

This week in downtown San Diego, there will be many people dressed as heroes and villains, but John Bonnett told 10News that is a problem outside the Convention Center, before people go through a weapons check.

Bonnett said while he's excited for this year's convention, he will also be paying more attention to who is around him.

"There are so many people in this concentrated area of land that you can't even move, hardly," he said. "Unfortunately, the advantage is the bad ones."

Now, Bonnett is worried he won't be able to tell who the bad ones are. He said people dress up in costumes so elaborate and realistic that it's hard to know what's real and what's fake.

"In light of Baton Rouge, Dallas, and really Nice and Turkey, the costumes in general are getting too realistic," he said.

Bonnett's concerned that Baton Rouge shooter Gavin Long could have passed for a Comic-Con attendee, with his armor and black ninja-like outfit.

Bonnett has reached out to organizers and asked for a temporary ban on costumes.

"Given the circumstances, a temporary ban would be a good thing; but in the future, a conversation," Bonnett said.

A spokesman for San Diego police said costumes are protected by the First Amendment, but officers can approach someone if they are suspicious. The spokesman said both uniformed and plainclothes officers will be on patrol, during the convention.

A Comic-Con spokesperson did not immediately respond for comment.

Bonnett said he's going no matter what.

"I'm living my life," Bonnett said. "I'm not going to let terror dictate it. However, we all have a shared responsibility."

And that's to say something if you see something.