Astroworld festival tragedy investigation traps Travis Scott
Several attendees asked the rapper to stop the concert in which eight people were crushed to death. The musician accumulates more than a dozen lawsuits from the victims
Travis Scott likes to incite chaos. And his supporters, the rages – something like the rage – like it that way. The unbridled energy of his spectators is part of the 30-year-old rapper’s trademark. So far, the mess had only cost him two counts of encouraging riots in his proceedings, counts he escaped by pleading guilty and paying fines. But last Friday, with Scott on stage at the Astroworld music festival, which he founded in his native Houston, bad governance crossed all lines: the night ended with eight deaths, between the ages of 14 and 27, and dozens of injured. The criminal investigation into how the tragedy happened points to the superstar, who already faces more than a dozen lawsuits, according to local media.
Before the concert began, Houston Police Chief Troy Finner visited Scott in his trailer to voice his “public safety concerns” that evening, Finner revealed in a tweet Monday. The rapper’s concerts are often a challenge for Houston security forces, so a 56-page plan has been prepared. It was “based on the design of the site” and took into account “many past experiences. [with the
rapper’s problems]”, according to the article, viewed by The New York Times.” The potential for multiple alcohol and drug incidents, the potential evacuation needs and the constant threat of a mass casualty situation are identified as major concerns. ”
To this breeding ground, it was added that for many attendees, this was the first massive concert after an 18-month pandemic, during which live music activity in the United States came to a standstill.
Outside the complex, the Houston Fire Department had stationed around 20 ambulances. One of them made his way into the audience around 9:30 p.m., nearly half an hour after Scott took the stage. The music stopped. In a video shared on social media, the artist turns to his team and asks what’s going on. “They all know what they came to do! He told the 50,000 attendees right away, before the music started playing again. He then asked them to “shake the ground”. The words served as the essence of a feverish mass of passion. Between pushing and screaming, some attendees asked the rapper to stop the show, but he didn’t find out. At the end of the night, 62 ambulances were needed.
The recital ended half an hour earlier than expected, but nearly 40 minutes after security forces said it was “an incident with the potential to kill large numbers.” Finner defended the decision to continue, arguing that a sudden stop could have caused a riot.
Fire chief Samuel Peña said on Sunday that Scott and organizers could have stepped in and stopped the show. “The only person who can really ask and get a tactical break when something is wrong is the artist. They have a large private security system and they have a responsibility, ”he said in an interview with local media.
Kylie Jenner, her partner, who is expecting their second child together, wrote to her 280 million Instagram followers on Sunday: “I want to make it clear that we were not aware of any deaths until the news came out. after the show. If I had known, I would not have continued the show and I would not have continued to record it. “That night, the youngest Kardashian was in Houston, recording the festival with her mobile from a secure platform.
The rapper has pledged to return the ticket money to all attendees and will partner with the BetterHelp portal to provide free mental health assistance to everyone affected by the tragedy.
The causes of death for the eight victims, including two teenagers, are still pending forensic reports, a process that can take several weeks. In the meantime, Travis Scott will cover the costs of the funeral, a representative of the artist informed on Monday in a press release. The second night of the event was canceled by the brand’s owner, live music multinational Live Nation. Scott has already announced that he will not be attending the Day N Vegas Festival this weekend as planned.
The Netflix documentary on Scott Look Mom I Can Fly (2019) is kind of a prologue to last Friday’s tragedy. The film shows the artist’s public alienation and how it prompts him to get out of hand. During a concert at the Walmart Arkansas Music Pavilion in 2017, a fan walks out on crutches shouting with joy, “I survived, I survived! Everything is fine!”.
That same year, a man named Kyle Green sued Scott after attending one of his concerts in New York where he, he claimed, was pushed from an upstairs balcony. Green remained paraplegic following the incident. Before that, another follower of the artist had taken to the same site after the rapper encouraged him to do so. “They will catch you. Do not be afraid. Do not be afraid!”.
Scott and the organizers of Astroworld already face more than a dozen lawsuits following Friday’s events. “We are sickened by the devastating tragedy. Travis Scott has a history of inciting violence and creating unsafe conditions for spectators, “said lawyers for Manuel Souza, who” suffered serious injuries when the uncontrolled mob knocked him to the ground and the trampled, “according to the lawsuit.