Teens recall rampage at Florida State Fair - CBS46 News

Teens recall rampage at Florida State Fair

Posted: Updated:
Teens hurt by the 'wilding' at the Fair spoke at a Thursday meeting Teens hurt by the 'wilding' at the Fair spoke at a Thursday meeting
HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, FL (WFLA) -

For the first time Thursday, we heard from a teenager who says she was hurt on the night a violent rampage happened at the Florida State Fair earlier this month.

"There were a lot of people jumping on me, surrounding me," Sarah Taylor, 18, said. "I got hit with a baton, an umbrella, some feet, some fists. I don't know what the rest was."

Taylor, who will graduate from high school this spring, spoke at a meeting for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Thursday night. Members of the NAACP and community wanted to hear from teens about what went wrong that night and how to prevent it from happening again.

"What it does - it gives us a better idea of what we need to do as a community - how we need to come together and listen to these kids and let them tell us what they think is right," said Carolyn Collins, President of the Hillsborough Co. branch of the NAACP. "I think far too often as adults we tell the children what to do and we don't listen."

Eyewitness accounts and cell video from that night detail trampling, thefts and fights as hundreds of teens ran wild. It was the first Friday of the fair, when students get in free.

Cousins Delonte Forward and Jalen Redding went that night with their families but left before things got out of hand. Forward, who is 15, said he heard rumblings that something was going to happen.

"They were doing it over a neighborhood - where they lived and stuff," he said. "Like the west side, east side."

Sarah Taylor's mother, Sonnita Tubbins, said she took her daughter to the emergency room after the incident on February 7 where doctors told her a portion of her nose was broken.

"I'm going to handle this the way it was supposed to be handled," Tubbins said. "I called the school board and I told them - I want to know - how do I petition to have student fair day shut down."

Most of the suggestions weren't that bold. Sheriff David Gee and about half a dozen of his deputies were on-hand Thursday to listen and take notes to what teens and parents told the crowd.

"Either an increase in security at the actual fair...or just regulation as to where it's not as easy for {young people} to come in," high school senior Wildens Cajuste suggested. "What happened at the fair this year is very childish and unfortunate, but at the same time the fair has been around forever and I wouldn't want them to stop the fair just because this one group of kids decided to do this."

Delonte Forward felt the same way.

"I think the parents should've been more attentive with their children," he said.

Earlier in the month, the leadership of the state fair announced they're putting new rules into place. Student with free fair passes must enter before 7 p.m. After then, any student coming into the fair must be with an adult age 18 or older.

Copyright 2014 WFLA. All rights reserved.


  • 8 On Your SideMore>>

  • TPD homicide detective under federal criminal investigation

    TPD homicide detective under federal criminal investigation

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 6:55 PM EDT2014-04-22 22:55:30 GMT
    Tampa Police Officer Eric Houston, who is working at a crime scene in this file photo, is under federal investigation.Tampa Police Officer Eric Houston, who is working at a crime scene in this file photo, is under federal investigation.
    The feds are investigating one of Tampa Police Department's lead homicide detectives. Officer Eric Houston, who is one of the lead detectives in the Julie Schenecker murder investigation, is under federal criminal investigation. More >
    The feds are investigating one of Tampa Police Department's lead homicide detectives. Officer Eric Houston, who is one of the lead detectives in the Julie Schenecker murder investigation, is under federal criminal investigation. 
    More >
  • New Port Richey soldier says squatters won't leave his home

    New Port Richey soldier says squatters won't leave his home

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 4:01 AM EDT2014-04-22 08:01:42 GMT
    Soldier & homeowner Michael Sharkey was deployed to Afghanistan two years ago. Facebook photoSoldier & homeowner Michael Sharkey was deployed to Afghanistan two years ago. Facebook photo
     When soldier Michael Sharkey was deployed to Afghanistan two years ago, he asked a friend to watch over his New Port Richey house. Now, they're fighting to get their house back.More >
    When soldier Michael Sharkey was deployed to Afghanistan two years ago, he asked a friend to watch over his New Port Richey house. Now, they're fighting to get their house back.
    More >
  • Tampa homeowner says Duke Energy is a bully for taking her oak tree

    Tampa homeowner says Duke Energy is a bully for taking her oak tree

    Monday, April 21 2014 5:34 PM EDT2014-04-21 21:34:15 GMT
    Neda Dandache and her family love their backyard oasis, even though a gigantic Duke Energy transmission tower abuts their backyard. Oak trees block that view, for now, and give them shade.The trees have never been an issue, but now, Duke wants them gone. Dandache says Duke's forester told her they may cause a problem - seven years from now."More >
    Neda Dandache and her family love their backyard oasis, even though a gigantic Duke Energy transmission tower abuts their backyard. Oak trees block that view, for now, and give them shade.The trees have never been an issue, but now, Duke wants them gone. Dandache says Duke's forester told her they may cause a problem - seven years from now."More >
  • NewsMore>>

  • SKorea ferry toll hits 150 as search gets tougher

    SKorea ferry toll hits 150 as search gets tougher

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 2:36 AM EDT2014-04-23 06:36:03 GMT
    The grim work of recovering bodies from the submerged South Korea ferry proceeded rapidly Wednesday, with the official death toll reaching 150, though a government official said divers must now rip through cabin...More >
    The grim work of recovering bodies from the submerged South Korea ferry proceeded rapidly Wednesday, with the official death toll reaching 150, though a government official said divers must now rip through cabin walls to...More >
  • Australia signals deeper search for Malaysian jet

    Australia signals deeper search for Malaysian jet

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 2:04 AM EDT2014-04-23 06:04:44 GMT
    As the search continued off the coast of Australia for the missing Malaysia Airlines jet on Monday, the airline announced another plane bound for India was forced to make an emergency landing after one of its tires...More >
    Australia's prime minister said Wednesday that failure to find any clue in the most likely crash site of the missing Malaysia Airlines jet would not spell the end of the search, as officials planned to soon bring in...More >
  • Canadiens sweep Lightning with 4-3 win

    Canadiens sweep Lightning with 4-3 win

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 10:35 PM EDT2014-04-23 02:35:42 GMT
    Max Pacioretty lifted the Montreal Canadiens into the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs Tuesday night with a power-play goal with 43 seconds remaining for a 4-3 victory and a four-game sweep of Tampa Bay.The first team to advance this year, the Canadiens also got goals from Daniel Briere, Brendan Gallagher and Lars Eller. Montreal now faces a long wait for the Eastern Conference semifinal against the winner of the Boston-Detroit series.Ondrej Palat had a goal and an assist for Tampa Ba...More >
    Max Pacioretty lifted the Montreal Canadiens into the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs Tuesday night with a power-play goal with 43 seconds remaining for a 4-3 victory and a four-game sweep of Tampa Bay.The first team to advance this year, the Canadiens also got goals from Daniel Briere, Brendan Gallagher and Lars Eller. Montreal now faces a long wait for the Eastern Conference semifinal against the winner of the Boston-Detroit series.Ondrej Palat had a goal and an assist for Tampa Ba...More >
  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
Powered by WorldNow
CBS Atlanta
Powered by WorldNow
All content © 2000-2014 WorldNow and WGCL-TV. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.