Tactical training. Loud bursts of gunfire in the dead of night. Coupled with a lack of information — the incident led to some confusion and fear around Marshall County earlier this week.
Around 9 p.m. on Monday, people began hearing what they described as “military-type assault weapons.” Several people reportedly had no idea what was going on and were terrified.
Video shared with News 2 from that evening captures the sounds.
Some said they heard the gunfire quite loudly around La Fuente Mexican Restaurant in Lewisburg.
News 2 has not been able to ascertain why people believe they saw and heard rapid, automatic gunfire in the center of town. However, we have since learned that the gunfire may have come from a military training exercise.
Adding to the confusion, the Tennessee Highway Patrol was also conducting a night drill at Henry Horton State Park more than 10 miles away.
“It is scary, man. The rapid gunfire. The loudness,” Tracy Garrett told News 2’s Andy Cordan. “It was dangerous. I am surprised nobody came hauling out of their home and firing randomly.”
It was initially believed and now known to be incorrect, that the automatic gunfire outside the Mexican restaurant was somehow associated with the training mission being conducted at the same time by the Tennessee Highway Patrol.
The THP strike teams were practicing multiple scenarios, including criminal apprehension and helicopter rescue missions.
They were working on things like “lowering a hoist to the ground, securing it and bringing it back to the helicopter for injured persons in remote areas,” Miller said.
Notices were placed at the park to alert the community about the special training operation. However, Lt. Miller assured that they will do a better job to alert the community about upcoming training exercises in the future.
News 2 has reached out for more information.