What to Know About the Astroworld Tragedy: Investigation Details

TO at least eight people were killed and dozens more were injured at a gig in Houston after a large crowd started to take center stage ...


TO at least eight people were killed and dozens more were injured at a gig in Houston after a large crowd started to take center stage during a performance by local rapper Travis Scott.

The concert was part of the Astromonde music festival, a two-day event that kicked off on Friday. About 50,000 people had gathered there Friday night when the injuries occurred, according to the Houston Fire Department.

It appeared to be one of the deadliest crowd control disasters at a gig in the United States in many years, reminiscent of the 1979 crash outside the doors of a Who’s show in Cincinnati that killed 11 people and stunned the nation.

Here’s what we know so far.

It is still unclear what prompted the crowd to rush, but witnesses described a chaotic scene before and during the concert, with many people in the back trying to rush forward. One spectator, Neema Djavadzadeh, said the event was “eventful from the start”.

“I got there around 3 am and saw people already struggling to stand up straight,” she said. “There was a lot of crowd mentality, people going to do whatever it takes to line up for the merch, the food, the shows, whatever you want. Lots of fights broke out throughout the day.

The crushing crowd was so intense it left no room to move, some attendees said.

“You can literally jump in the air and you’re there in the air – it’s like your hands are up, your hands are held up,” said Vanessa Johnson, 20.

Videos posted by viewers on social media showed a chaotic scene near the stage, with some in the crowd begging for help and others ignoring any serious issues.

In a video, which was posted to YouTube but has since been deleted, Mr. Scott was on stage and heard the crowd say, “I want to see anger. Who wants to rage? Moments later, he could be heard saying, “There’s an ambulance in the crowd, whoa, whoa, whoa”, apparently trying to calm the commotion.

For several seconds there was no music. Mr. Scott looked towards the crowd and the red and blue lights of an ambulance could be seen in the middle of the sea of ​​people.

Then Mr. Scott said, “If everyone’s okay, put your middle finger up in the sky. As the music resumed, Mr Scott urged the crowd to “shake the ground”.

The concert continued for about 30 minutes and then ended with Mr. Scott waving to the crowd and jogging off the stage saying, “I love you all. Make it home safely. Good night!”

City mayor Sylvester Turner said it was too early to say whether the security operation was adequate or what led to the deaths.

The mayor, who has known Mr Scott’s family for years, described a solid security operation.

“We had more security there than in World Series games,” he said, noting that the event took place on county property, with security hosted by the city of Houston.

There were 505 event security personnel, 91 armed private security officers and 76 officers from the Houston Police Department at the event, officials said at a press conference.

Live Nation, the concert’s organizer, shut down the concert about 30 minutes earlier than scheduled, around 10:10 pm – 40 minutes after city officials said the “mass event” had started.

Houston Police Chief Troy Finner said officials fear the early end of the gig could make matters worse.

“You can’t just close when you have 50,000 and over 50,000 individuals,” he said. “We have to worry about the riots, the riots, when you have such a young group.”

The crowd was young. Eight people, aged 14 to 27, with an unknown age, have died. Hundreds of people were injured, including a 10-year-old child who was taken to hospital.

Those who have died understand: Franco Patino, 21, senior at the University of Dayton in Ohio; John Hilgert, 14, a freshman at Memorial High School near Houston; Brianna Rodriguez, 16, a student at Heights High School in Houston; Rudy Peña from Laredo, Texas; the Danish Baig, whose brother said he was trying to save a sister-in-law from trampling; Jacob E. Jurinek, 20, student at Southern Illinois University Carbondale; Axel Acosta, 21, a student at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington; and Madison Dubiski, 23, who worked at a Houston-based advertising agency.

Since his emergence from Houston in the early 2010s, Mr. Scott has become one of rap’s most ambitious figures, pushing the boundaries of entrepreneurship and the artist’s role as a supplier of branded goods and events for fans.

The Astroworld music festival, now in its third edition, is named after his 2018 album “Astroworld,” which sparked debate in the music industry over Mr. Scott’s heavy use. retail lots, using a variety of merchandise – sweaters, t-shirts, ashtrays and more – to help drive the album’s sales and strengthen its position on the Billboard charts.

Mr. Scott has also earned a reputation for his concerts showcasing high-level stage production as well as the wild and chaotic energy of his audience.

In 2015, Mr. Scott pleaded guilty to charges of reckless driving after encouraging Lollapalooza fans in Chicago to go through security barricades and take the stage. Two years later, Mr. Scott was chased by a fan who said he had become paralyzed after being pushed from a third-floor balcony and dragged onto stage while the rapper was performing in Manhattan.

Shortly after the Astroworld concert, Mr. Scott’s girlfriend Kylie Jenner posted a response in an Instagram story.

“Travis and I are broken and devastated,” she said, offering her condolences to the relatives of the victims. “I want to make it clear that we were not aware of any deaths until the news came out after the show and in no world would we have continued filming or acting.”

Observers had criticized the artist and the event’s organizers for not stopping the show earlier once the violence and chaos became evident.

Mr. Scott also posted a video story on his Instagram account.

“Honestly, I’m just devastated and I could never imagine something like this happening,” Mr Scott said, rubbing his forehead in a distraught manner. “I’ll do whatever I can to keep you posted and keep you up to date with what’s going on.” I love you all.”

The report was provided by Melina Delkic, J. David Goodman, Edgar Sandoval, Maria Jiménez Moya, Eduardo Medina, Azi Paybarah and Aina J. Khan.

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Newsrust - US Top News: What to Know About the Astroworld Tragedy: Investigation Details
What to Know About the Astroworld Tragedy: Investigation Details
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