ABC News 4 Charleston: Man Arrested Following Shooting at Coastal Carolina Fair
According to the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office, 18-year-old Rashan Dantzler of Walterboro was arrested around 11 Saturday night in connection with a shooting at the fair.
This came after two shooting victims were found on the ground near the food court area, according to Fair spokesperson Joe Bolchoz. Deputies are still investigating a motive in the shooting, but believe the victims and suspect know each other.
Deputies say both victims had non-life threatening injuries, and one of them was transported to a local hospital with multiple gun shot wounds.
According to Charleston County Sheriff’s Office PIO Major John Clark, deputies did recover a weapon believed to have been used during the incident.
My wife, daughter and I went to the Coastal Carolina Fair on Friday, October 29. It was fun. My daughter laughed her way through a bunch of rides, and we all ate our way through some phenomenal food — fried cheddar cheese nuggets, fried pickles, and a giant smoked turkey leg were among other artery-clogging wonders.
As this was our first experience at the Coastal Carolina Fair, Joanna and I noticed quite a few differences between this fair, and the little fairs and festivals we were used to in the Philadelphia suburbs. First, it was enormous, more amusement park than fairgrounds. Second, it was clean, with nary a scrap of litter on the ground. Third, it was expensive, much more so than what we had been used to before (but it was worth it).
Unfortunately, the last night of the fair was marred by a double shooting. Some punk from Walterboro presumably ran into some other punks and rattled off a few shots in the crowded area near the food court. You see the story linked above.
The thing is — it couldn’t have happened. Not here. Not at the Coastal Carolina Fair.
Why not? Well, look over the shoulder of the nice young lady being interviewed by the local ABC News affiliate. What do you see? It’s a giant sign showing the crossed-out silhouette of a Beretta M9 and the words “NO CONCEALED WEAPONS ALLOWED.”
Those signs were the very first thing I noticed at the fair. They were on display as people left the main road and turned into the parking lot. They were on display at every entrance, large enough to be seen by all. Even aside from the sheer size of the sign, such signs always catch my eye for two reasons: One, up in Pennsylvania I was a permitholder (and have yet to obtain my concealed carry permit here) and, two, the signs are absolutely, ridiculously worthless.
Thankfully, nobody was killed yesterday. But it could have been a nightmare, and it goes back to the question I asked in February 2008, when America’s Right was still in its infancy: Why is it that we continue to put more faith in the character of sick individuals bent on destruction of life than into the character, morality, values and ability of law-abiding citizens?
Another thing I noticed at the fair was the police presence. They were everywhere, and undoubtedly pounced on this particular situation quickly. But why take chances? Shopping malls, school hallways, supermarkets — these places do not have police presence. And that’s where we see shootings get out of control.
What happened yesterday was impossible. The signs prohibited concealed weapons, so obviously there was no weapon and was no shooting. Or, more plausibly, someone who cares so little about the law so as to shoot another human being also cares so little about the law that he disregarded the sign and brought his gun into the fair anyway.