Wayne Deputy under investigation following incident at county fair

WAYNE COUNTY, NC (WITN) The Wayne County Sheriff's Office is talking about the investigation involving one of his deputies who punched a woman at the county fair as she grabbed him.

The Wayne County Sheriff's Office is investigating the incident involving the deputy and 18-year-old Tziah Kelly.

Kelly says the deputy punched her while she was trying to break up a dispute involving her brother.

At a press conference Thursday afternoon, another deputy, Mike Smith, says Kelly was intentionally grabbing the deputy when he was trying to help escort her brother out of the fair.

Smith says once Kelly put her hands on the deputy he decided she needed to be escorted out of the fair as well.

Kelly says, "I mean yeah, I pulled away but I didn't do, I didn't feel like that was called for. He was grabbing me hard and I just pulled away and said quit grabbing me like that. He was grabbing me roughly like that wasn't called for at all."

Smith says the deputy used appropriate techniques to gain control of the situation and it was a tugging match between the two.

He says, "These deputies dealing with this all night, they'll have to wonder about the problems with people running through the fair and they're trying to take control. By taking control, she's pulling away, they're fighting."

Wayne County Sheriff Larry Pierce says this is an unfortunate event and it's difficult dealing with a non compliant individual.

He says, "Today our teachers and our school resource officers and law enforcement in general deal with rude, disrespectful and violent behavior daily and we accept this as a norm."

Kelly was charged with resisting arrest, second-degree trespassing and assault on government official.

The sheriff's office has asked for a statement from Kelly and an interview and have yet to receive either.