Travis Scott sued after Astroworld Festival crowd surge tragedy in Texas
Written by Hitmix News on 9 November 2021
A lawyer said he will be filing legal action on behalf of at least 35 people following a fatal crowd surge at a concert by rapper Travis Scott.
Lawyer Tony Buzbee said the concert was planned “incredibly poorly” with “no thought given to the safety of the young people”.
He called the event “utter chaos” and said the number of plaintiffs is growing – with his phone “ringing off the hook”.
Eight people aged between 14 and 27 were killed in the crush and hundreds more from a crowd of about 50,000 were injured.
Image: Around 50,000 people were at the festival. Pic: Twitter @ONACASELLA /via REUTERS
Among the 35 plaintiffs Mr Buzbee is representing are the Acosta family, whose 21-year-old son Axel died from cardiac arrest.
Mr Buzbee said: “Crowd-goers trying to escape their own suffocation trampled over his body like a piece of trash.”
Father Edgar Acosta added: “We’re trying to make things change in these type of events.
“Today it’s me, I lost my son. It could be you, it could be you.”
Scott has said he has been left “absolutely devastated” by the incident.
Investigators are expected to examine the design of safety barriers and the use of crowd control in determining what led to the surge at the sold-out festival, which was founded by Scott.
Manuel Souza, one of the people who filed a petition seen by Reuters and Associated Press news agencies, suffered “serious bodily injuries” in the tragedy at the Astroworld Festival in Houston, Texas.
Mr Souza is seeking at least $1m (about £741,000) in damages from defendants including Scott and show organisers Live Nation, according to a lawsuit filed in Harris County District Court.
Another man named Kristian Paredes has also filed a lawsuit against Scott, Live Nation, and Canadian rapper Drake, who made a guest appearance at the concert, according to US media.
Image: Brianna Rodriguez, 16, was among the victims Image: Rudy Pena, 23, the youngest of five siblings, attended the show with his friends
Some 13 lawsuits have been filed against Scott and Live Nation Entertainment Inc in Harris County.
Many of the claimants are suing for negligence, gross negligence, and damages for injuries they sustained at the concert.
Several of the lawsuits state that the defendant was “seriously and permanently injured by the recklessness and conscious indifference” of Scott and Live Nation.
They say the defendants “failed to provide the proper safety planning, security, and medical personnel, proximately causing plaintiff’s injuries”.
The tragedy unfolded after some of the crowd at the show are said to have pushed toward the stage at NRG Park, as a timer clicked down to the start of Grammy-nominated Scott’s show.
Among the victims were high school pupil Brianna Rodriguez, 16; medical assistant Rudy Pena, 23; student Franco Patino and his friend Jacob Jurinek, both 21; and Danish Baig, 27.
The eight people who died
John Hilgert, 14, and the youngest of those who died was described as a “good student, athlete and so polite”.
Varsity cheerleader Madison Dubiski, 23, was the “life and soul of the party”, according to friends.
Devoted Dallas Cowboys fan Mirza “Danish” Baig was reportedly injured as he tried to help his fiancée.
Brianna Rodriguez, 16, was a high school student who “loved to dance”.
Axel Acosta Avila, 21, was a computer science major at Western Washington University
Rodolfo “Rudy” Pena, 23, of Laredo, Texas, was a student at Laredo College and wanted to be Border Patrol agent
Franco Patino, 21, was working toward a mechanical engineering technology degree at the University of Dayton.
Jacob “Jake” Jurinek, 20, a junior at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, died just short of his 21st birthday
Families of the victims have demanded justice as a criminal investigation is now under way, with Houston mayor Sylvester Turner calling the disaster a “tragedy on many different levels”.
Thirteen people remained in hospital on Sunday. Details of their conditions have not been released.
Image: Franco Patino, 21, a student at the University of Dayton in Ohio, was described as an ‘amazing person’ Image: Jacob Jurinek had saved up to attend the festival
A security officer was also left unconscious after apparently being injected in the neck by a concert-goer. Houston city police chief Troy Finner said his department had opened a criminal investigation by homicide and narcotics detectives, following reports that somebody in the audience had been injecting people with drugs.
Houston police and fire department officials will review videos taken at the concert.
Officials also looked to review the event’s security plan and various permits issued to organisers to see whether they were properly followed. In addition, investigators planned to speak with Live Nation representatives, Scott, and concert-goers.
Scott said he is working to help the families of “the ones that was lost” as well as giving his “total support” to police.
He announced he will cover all funeral costs and “provide further aid” for those affected.
Image: Scott is expecting his second child with partner Kylie Jenner. Pic: ESBP/STAR MAX/IPx
The 29-year-old star is known for his high-energy performances in which music fans are encouraged to stage dive and crowd-surf.
He stopped multiple times during his set after spotting fans in distress near the front of the stage and asked security to help people out of the crowd.
His partner Kylie Jenner, with whom he is expecting his second child, said after the tragedy that they had been left “broken and devastated”, and offered her “deepest condolences” to the families of those affected.
Sky News has contacted representatives for Scott and Live Nation for comment. A spokesperson for Drake declined to comment on the lawsuit reports.