Authorities respond to Saturday night shooting inside state fairgrounds
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UPDATE 10:30 p.m. 9/4/2022: Law enforcement shared more insight on the shooting with 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS.
Sheriff Bob Fletcher said, “In this Midway area, on the street here, there’s at least 30 to 35 police officers and I would say Alex and Joe and I and Rich were probably the closest to the shooting scene. But, within feet there are other officers, so you can see the brazenness of pulling a gun.”
Ramsey County Deputy, Alex Graham said, “If I were to discharge my firearm, in a very dense population like this, I may have a clear shot at that second, but it doesn’t preclude somebody from walking in front. That’s one of those moments you never want to face as a police officer.”
Graham also said, “As we were using the chemical irritant, one person, who we have information on, raised a firearm above their head and discharged a round into the air causing the crowed to scatter and send the State Fair into sheer panic.”
Some Sunday fairgoers feel safe despite what happened last night, while others said they would not come out to the fair at night.
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UPDATE 11:20 a.m. 9/4/22: Authorities responded to the Saturday night gunfire incident in an 11 a.m. press conference outside the state fairgrounds.
Officials speaking or attending were fair Police Chief Ron Knafla, fair PIO David Titus, fair General Manager Jerry Hammer, Gov. Tim Walz, Bureau of Criminal Apprehension Commissioner John Harrington, BCA Superintendent Drew Evans, and a Minnesota State Patrol representative.
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Watch the full press conference in the player above.
UPDATE 1:15 a.m. 9/4/22: The Minnesota State Fair has confirmed officers responded to a gunshot shortly after 10 p.m. at the intersection of Carnes Avenue and Liggett Street at the fairgrounds.
The fair media representative added that the area was “heavily populated” at the time of the shooting.
St. Paul Fire medics took one person to the hospital for injuries that were not life threatening. It is unknown at this time if the injuries were directly from the gunshot.
5 EYEWITNESS NEWS crews observed a heavy police presence in the area.
Gov. Tim Walz says people can expect more law enforcement at the fair Sunday.
The Minnesota BCA is assisting the fair with the investigation. KSTP is working to gather more details from state fair officials about Saturday night’s incident and public safety measures for Sunday, day 11 of the fair.
Check back for updates as more information becomes available.
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INITIAL REPORT 10:46 p.m. 9/3/22: Police are closing the Minnesota State Fair early after an incident Saturday night.
The Minnesota State Fair released this statement at about 10:50 p.m. Saturday:
“The fairgrounds began closing early this evening at approximately 10:20 p.m. due to disturbances in the area of the Midway. There is nothing more to confirm at this time.“
Many of people were seen on the 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS livestream camera running in several directions at about 10:07 p.m.
Multiple officers and deputies were seen carrying rifles and cruising the area with emergency lights switched on just before 10:30 p.m.
An area near the Midway was blocked off with crime scene tape.