PADUCAH, Ky (News First) – On June 25, 2024, multiple physical fights involving juveniles erupted at the McCracken County Fair. A deputy from the McCracken County Sheriff’s Office intervened to break up one of the fights but was subsequently followed and verbally harassed by two female juveniles. The situation escalated when one of the juveniles struck the deputy, leading to her arrest. Another juvenile then struck another deputy, resulting in her arrest as well. Deputies contacted the court-designated worker to attempt to have the juveniles lodged in the juvenile detention center.

Personnel from the McCracken County Sheriff’s Office, Paducah Police Department, and Kentucky State Police worked together to quell additional fights and identify those involved. Due to the disturbances, fair personnel began closing the fair at approximately 9:15 p.m.

The McCracken County Fair, hosted by Kiwanis, is a charitable event with proceeds benefiting various community agencies. The fair offers families an opportunity to enjoy summer nights together while supporting a good cause. However, in recent years, a small minority has disrupted the event, tarnishing the experience for others.

The McCracken County Sheriff’s Office, alongside other law enforcement agencies and Kiwanis, is committed to ensuring a safe and enjoyable environment for all attendees. Effective immediately, individuals under 17 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to enter and leave the fair. Those who do not comply will be asked to leave, and enforcement action will be taken if they refuse. The MCSO is determined to prevent fights from endangering attendees and spoiling the fair.

Sheriff Ryan Norman has instructed deputies to request the presiding District Court Judge to incarcerate any juveniles caught fighting at the fair. This measure, although costly, is deemed necessary to maintain a safe environment. Due to changes by the Kentucky Department of Juvenile Justice, female juveniles must be transported to Boyd County, a fifteen-hour round trip requiring two deputies, which impacts the county’s patrol costs. Despite these challenges, the Sheriff believes this action is essential for the safety of residents and visitors.