In the wake of the tragedy at Astroworld Houston, events have taken an even darker turn, with reports that foul play may have occurred. As rapper Travis Scott performed, a surge in the crowd resulted in the deaths of eight people and hundreds of injuries. A criminal probe has been launched, and law enforcement is now reporting that individuals may have been jabbed with syringes during the show, potentially causing the crush.
Houston Police Chief Troy Finner related that at least one security guard at the venue claimed to have been pricked in the neck – likely by a syringe – while attempting to restrain an attendee. “They [emergency services] administered Narcan, and he was revived, and the medical staff did notice a prick that was similar to a prick that you would get if somebody tried to inject,” Finner noted. He said that other people might have also been jabbed.
Narcan is most often used to reverse the results of a drug overdose.
On Saturday, Nov. 6 – which would have been the second day of the canceled music festival – media outlets related that at least 11 concertgoers had been rushed to hospital in a state of cardiac arrest. Speculation was rife regarding what caused the heart issues. Some suggested that they arose from being crushed in the crowd, while others averred they were due to being injected with an unknown substance.
Entertainment news site TMZ has been live updating on the event and wrote that:
“A source connected to Astroworld tells TMZ, someone in the crowd went crazy and began injecting people with some sort of drug, which caused panic and then a surge. The source says authorities are trying to determine if those who went into cardiac arrest were the ones injected. We’re told one of those who died is a 10-year-old. The source says it appears to be a targeted attack. We have not confirmed this report, but the source is a key person involved in the festival.”
Chief Finner’s latest information suggests that TMZ‘s reportage was at least partially correct. Houston Police Executive Assistant Chief Lt. Larry Satterwhite said that “over the course of a few minutes” several people suffered “some type of cardiac arrest or some type of medical episode.”
However, despite the reports of people being jabbed with syringes, crowd management specialist Paul Wertheimer commented that the concert environment at Astroworld set the stage for a highly preventable tragedy and that crowd crushes are as old as rock and roll. He explained:
“Standing room environments — often called festival seating — are the most dangerous and deadly crowd configuration at live entertainment events … It forces people in a crowd to compete against each other for the best location or best area to be. And in crowd safety, that’s the last thing you want to occur. You want people working together.”
A police investigation is currently underway, and Liberty Nation will keep you informed of further developments.
~ Read more from Mark Angelides.