UTICA, NY-- Three mass shootings in two weeks is a reminder to some that public places are vulnerable to an attack.
Eleven people were shot to death in Pittsburgh, Pennslyvannia while attending Shabbat services on Oct 27. Four people were killed on Nov. 2 inside a yoga studio in Tallahassee Florida. A masked gun man opened fire inside a bar in Thousand Oaks, California on Wednesday. All of the attacks are considered soft targets.
"A soft target would be any place where... a larger number of people can be gathering and they're able to come and go freely with very little security if any," said Oneida County Sheriff Robert Maciol.
Soft targets are everywhere, but there are some places that have become better prepared if a shooting occurred.
"We're really harded up the security at most if not all of our schools," Maciol said. "Whether it's going to a single point of entry and at that single point of entry, you've either got got police officers school resource officers, special patrol officers, whatever the case maybe. You're taking your windows, which on a nice summer fall day you have a them open, you don't do that anymore."
Some local residents said because of the location and frequency of shootings across the country, it could change the way they think about going to public places.
"We're going to eventually get to the point where people are going to be scared to go to restaurants and stuff with their families," said Francisco Rivera, of Frankfort. "To have that in their head 'as I might get shot."'
Maciol said people can better protect themselves in active shooter situation by remembering three simple tips, run, hide and fight.
"If you can't run and you have nowhere to hide then you fight, you do what you gotta do to defend yourself."
Maciol added that anyone or anything seems suspicious report it to law enforcement.