WAKE FOREST, N.C. (WNCN) – The Wake County Sheriff’s Office said they are working to identify a group of individuals who attacked a family at the NC State Fair.
It happened while the family was waiting in line to go on a ride the evening on Saturday, Oct. 21.
“The only thing I can remember is a lot of shoving, hair grabbing, swinging and flying fists,” said the Wake Forest mother who asked not to be identified.
The mom said she, her husband, and two boys, ages nine and eleven, had been waiting for the ride for about an hour and noticed several people cutting in line.
“Honestly, it felt like there were no responsible adults in the crowd. On a Saturday night we didn’t have the help that we needed,” said the mother.
When a large group approached, the 48-year-old said she confronted them while they were trying to cut in front of everyone. She said things then escalated when she was attacked from behind by a couple of the females in the group. The mom said she knew her boys were swept up in the middle of it all but didn’t know the extent of it.
“I just thought, ‘I’ll file my report, they’re never going to find them, random violence happens, this time it happened to us and we’re okay.’ And then I saw the video and my husband and I were furious, we had no idea my child was attacked by this person and that changed things,” the mother added.
The mother said they eventually discovered video of the attack posted online when a friend reached out on social media asking if anyone had witnessed the incident. The family was hoping to gather more evidence to help law enforcement in their investigation after filing a report.
The mom said the video showed a clear image of what happened that night including her nine-year-old son who was thrown to the ground, assaulted, and nearly stomped on.
She said a few bystanders rushed in to help pull the boys away quickly and stopped the fight from escalating.
In tears, the mother added, “These two incredible helpers who took my kids out of it, they gave them back to me and I was just holding them and saying, ‘We’re okay’, I don’t know who they are, but I am grateful they were there that night.”
The family said they went to find help after the attack, but when they were able to locate security, they returned and the group was already gone. With the video, the family is hopeful that investigators will identify the people involved and prevent a situation like this from happening again.
The mom said, “If you’re going to the fair and you up assaulting a 48-year-old mother with her two small children because you didn’t want to wait in line, what else would you do?”
The Wake Forest mom said she also hopes the family’s story will bring awareness to a greater need for security at the fair, especially in locations where there have been issues before.
Major Chris Riewe said the NC Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services Police received 102 reports during the 11-day event. Riewe said preliminary information revealed a majority of those reports involved circumstances, which lead to trespass notifications. Those reports also included minor drug offenses, public fighting, and other minor disruptions.
The Wake County Sheriff’s Office said they are aware of the incident and are working to identify everyone involved. If anyone has information regarding the situation, they are asked to contact the agency at 919-856-6800.