Witnesses recount scary moments after shots rang out at Minnesota State Fair
FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn. (FOX 9) - With 249,490 people in attendance on Saturday, a gunman endangered the lives of thousands on Saturday night, when he shot a gun inside the Minnesota State Fairgrounds.
"It’s senseless, it’s outrageous, you hear the frustrations," Gov. Tim Walz said.
"It’s just disgusting," State Fair Police Chief Ron Knafla added.
A large fight had broken out among kids near the intersection of Carnes Avenue and Liggett Street of the fairgrounds, when witnesses say everyone began running in the other direction. A single gunshot had been fired just after 10 p.m.; officials say, even as three dozen police officers looked on from only feet away.
Eriberto Lopez and Rebecca Alarcon were enjoying their fourth day at the fair when the shooting happened.
"It’s like a scene out of a movie," Lopez told FOX 9 on Sunday. "I was very scared… it’s really scary to experience it firsthand."
"It’s just an experience that I will not [wish for] even my worst enemy to experience," Alarcon said. "Once everyone was running we heard the word ‘someone is shooting’, and I think the biggest thing was get out of there."
One person – believed to be the intended target of the shooting -- was hit in the leg and taken to Regions Hospital where he’s expected to survive his injuries.
Police say the weapon used has not been recovered; and now there are many questions about how this gun even got onto the fairgrounds in the first place.
"That you could get a small gun in is not inconceivable, but we want to make it even more difficult in the future," Department of Public Safety commissioner John Harrington said.
Through the final 48 hours of the fair, officials have doubled the number of State Patrol on hand, and added even more St. Paul police officers and BCA agents.