Tribute made for teen killed at DeSoto County Fair as some question event security

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The DeSoto County Fair announced it would be closed Monday due to a possible threat at a nearby school. It comes just days after 17-year-old Danny Lopez was shot and killed. The shooter is still on the run.

Lopez’s mom, Stephanie Castro, posted a video on Facebook Monday morning with a tribute to her son.

Danny Lopez. (Credit: Stephanie Castro)

Castro’s friend Ashley Beck also took to Facebook to post a picture and wrote, “A young life is gone, and a family forever changed.”

“I would never want to be in her shoes and have to do or what she’s doing right now. You know, some parents don’t ever heal from this and the closure. Who knows if that’s ever going to come?” said Beck.

Beck told WINK News on Sunday how Lopez’z mom learned about the shooting.

“She was actually at home. She said that when she got the phone call from his girlfriend, she was sleeping, and his girlfriend woke them up, woke her up, and told her what had happened, and that’s what she had rushed to the hospital,” Beck said.

Lopez died of a gunshot to the chest. Arcadia police are not saying much about what sparked the shooting

Detectives say they are not suspects but might know something about what happened.

Beck shared this message from Lopez’s mom. “She said, ‘Ashley, just asked for justice. Whoever has seen something, whoever knows something for this mother’s sake, for a sister’s sake, for a father, and a cousin, please come forward.’”

If you have any information about the shooting, call the Arcadia Police Department at (863) 494-2222.

The shooting has set the community on edge, questioning the security of the fair as a whole

The pretty colors and fun-looking rides usually depict an innocently good time, but after Saturday night’s deadly shooting, one mother said she likely won’t bring her boys this week. If she does, she will only while it’s light out.

Light or dark, Elizabeth Perez will be at the fair. She has worked the kiddie rides for about five years and heard the gunfire over the weekend.

“All I heard was a boom. That was that. And then people running, that’s all I heard,” said Perez.

The deadly shooting doesn’t change her mind about her workplace. “I still feel safe. I don’t think anything’s going to happen. You know, I know the fair needs all the people at the fairgrounds, the people that run it and stuff feel really sorry, what happened, even though they didn’t even know what was going on either. You know, so, you know, they give their condolence. We all do,” Perez said

The fair closed on Monday out of an abundance of caution due to the threat at the school nearby. That threat has since been deemed to be not credible.

The fair said the swine show would still happen Monday night. Only exhibitors and families will be allowed in, and security will be increased.

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