Families alarmed by gunshots near youth baseball game in Goldsboro

Wayne County News

GOLDSBORO, N.C. (WNCN) — Gunshots heard during a baseball game caused concern and a response from Wayne County sheriff’s deputies on Monday night in Goldsboro. 

Families said they heard gunshots around 6 p.m. while at the Eastern Carolina Athletic Park. 

At first, some parents said they didn’t think much of it since ECAP is in a rural area where that’s common.

“Then all of the sudden, we heard whizzing like right by our heads, and we’re like, ‘Oh my gosh, that’s really close,'” said parent Candace King.

King said she heard one hit a fence.

“You heard the ‘ding’ and I’ve just never heard a bullet that close before. I’ve shot a gun before but never heard it, almost on the receiving end of it; it was unbelievable, it really was,” she said. 

Several people took cover and called 911.

“Somebody’s shooting in the woods and a bullet just flew over the ball field,” one 911 caller told the dispatcher. 

“They’re not just firing. Two of them have come over here by the field,” another 911 caller said. 

The Wayne County Sheriff’s Office responded and said they found four people target shooting on private property nearby. Shooting on private property is not illegal, but deputies said people need to shoot in a safe manner and direction.

Deputies said they went back to the people who were shooting on Tuesday and showed the group how to shoot safely, while also showing them a map of the area. 

“They just need to realize what’s on the other side of what they’re shooting at,” said King. “I mean it could’ve ended so much worse than it did. I’m just glad it didn’t.”

A spokesperson sent a statement on behalf of Sheriff Pierce:

“This was an extremely unfortunate and dangerous situation but was glad that no one was injured. He understood the concerns that the spectators and ball players had and caution anyone who fires a weapon to fire it in a safe manner and safe direction. These individuals could have very easily caused extreme harm to innocent citizens.”

Wayne Co. Sheriff’s Office

Deputies said they didn’t find any bullets at ECAP and no property was damaged.

ECAP managers didn’t want to comment, but some parents told CBS 17 they were pleased with how the facility handled the incident. 

Many families returned to the fields on Thursday for more games. 

“They’ve been stuck inside and this means the world to them and us, parents that we can actually get out here and watch them play and do what they love,” said King.

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