GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — The Pitt County Sheriff’s Office is investigating an incident where two teens were stabbed at the Pitt County Fair on Saturday.
In a media release, officials said they responded at 8:16 p.m. to the Pitt County Fairgrounds to a report of someone stabbed. Officials said two teens, ages 19 and 17, were stabbed. Reports indicate they were also assaulted by a group of 6-10 males.
Both victims were transported to ECU Health Medical by EMS. There was no update on their conditions as of Sunday morning. No names have been released.
Officials also said while dealing with the stabbings, deputies received reports of several fights and shots being fired at the fairgrounds. But, those reports were unfounded. The fair closed early Saturday but resumed normal operations on Sunday.
This incident remains under investigation.
It’s at least the second time in just under a year that an incident prompted the fair to end early. Exactly a year ago, on Sept. 25, 2021, the fair was shut down early due to multiple altercations. Officials said people at the fair heard screaming and witnessed others running toward an attraction. When deputies responded, they found multiple individuals fighting. No injuries were reported.
Three teens, ages 14-17, were detained in 2021. A concealed and a loaded gun was seized from one of the detained juveniles.
Those who spoke with WNCT said Saturday’s incident was definitely a scary situation to witness. They spoke about a chaotic situation and not really knowing what happened.
One person, who did not wish to be named, said they walked past the two stabbing victims as they were on the ground being treated by security and medical staff. She also saw evidence — two bloody shirts — taken out by an NC State Trooper.
“The fair seemed to be carrying on, and a line of people were at the gates, streaming in as we drove away,” one woman said via text to WNCT’s Caitlin Richards. “Not safe and not fun. 8-year-old saw too much blood and after a day of showing chickens and goats (she got a handful of ribbons) and riding the mechanical bull and a pony, she fell asleep petrified.”
Another person who witnessed the incident said one victim was stabbed in the leg and the other in the arm.
“When the fighting happened, it was so busy that the fight moved to behind a food truck,” she said. “Everyone scattered after the stabbing. We’re not sure where the mace came from. My kids were grabbing their throats. Guards did not show up until after the crowd dispersed.”
On Sunday, security was much more visible at the fair with at least one stand in the center with a security official on it.
Days ago, Sheriff Paula Dance had previously authorized the deployment of some off-duty deputies in the immediate area of the fairgrounds in case of an emergency. The move was made after a private security firm hired to work the Pitt County Fair was fired because it was not authorized by the state of North Carolina. The fair had been working the past couple of days with unarmed volunteer security.
As a result, officials said the first three deputies arrived on the scene at 8:18 p.m., two minutes after being notified of the incident.
If anyone has information regarding this incident they are urged to contact Pitt-Greenville Crime Stoppers at (252) 758-7777 or go online at www.crimestoppers.org. You can remain anonymous and if your tip results in an arrest you can earn a cash reward.