Astroworld Festival: Police Confirm May Have Been Injected Drugs; Launches Criminal Probe
From Fox News by Nate Day November 6, 2021
Natalie’s Commentary: If the evidence proves that one person pricked 8 people with drugs. This was premeditated and could turn into a mass murder case. ~ Natalie
HOUSTON (AP) — The crowd at a Houston music festival suddenly surged toward the stage during a performance by rapper Travis Scott, squeezing fans so tightly together that they could not breathe or move their arms, witnesses said Saturday, hours after at least eight people died in the chaos.
The dead ranged in age from 14 to 27, and 13 people were still hospitalized, Mayor Sylvester Turner said. He called the disaster “a tragedy on many different levels” and said it was too early to draw conclusions about what went wrong.
“It may well be that this tragedy is the result of unpredictable events, of circumstances coming together that couldn’t possibly have been avoided,” said Judge Lina Hidalgo, Harris County’s top elected official. “But until we determine that, I will ask the tough questions.”
Experts who have studied deaths caused by crowd surges say they are often a result of density — too many people packed into a small space. The crowd is often running either away from a perceived threat or toward something they want, such as a performer, before hitting a barrier.
The pandemonium unfolded Friday evening at Astroworld, a sold-out, two-day event in NRG Park with an estimated 50,000 people in attendance. As a timer clicked down to the start of the performance, the crowd pushed forward.
“As soon as he jumped out on the stage, it was like an energy took over and everything went haywire,” concertgoer Niaara Goods said. “All of a sudden, your ribs are being crushed. You have someone’s arm in your neck. You’re trying to breathe, but you can’t.”
In a press conference held on Saturday afternoon, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner confirmed that while the age of one victim remains unknown, other victims were 14, 16, 21, 23 and 27. Two victims were 21 and two were 23.
Turner confirmed that 25 people were hospitalized, including several attendees under the age of 18.
Houston Police Department Chief Troy Finner said that his department had 528 officers on the scene with another 755 security officers provided by event promoter Live Nation.
He explained that there are “a lot of narratives” floating around regarding what happened at the event, but encouraged those keeping up with the case to “follow the facts and evidence.”
He did say, however, that authorities have obtained a statement from a security guard suggesting they felt a prick in their neck and medical staff concurred that a marking on his skin aligned with such an event.
Narcan was administered to several individuals, though the exact number is currently unclear.
Astroworld security guard pricked in neck with needle, Houston police say.
At least one person at the Travis Scott concert where eight people died Friday night was injected with something by an unknown, “needle” wielding assailant, and had to be revived with Narcan — a drug used to treat narcotic overdoses, Houston’s police chief said Saturday.
Chief Troy Finner said the investigation into the mayhem at the Astroworld concert that also saw 300 injured “is now a criminal investigation that is going to involve our homicide division as well as narcotics.”
The details of what happened to the security officer who was jabbed are not yet clear, Finner said.
He was reaching over to restrain or grab a citizen and he felt a prick in his neck,” the police chief said. After he was given the Narcan, medical staff did see a mark on his neck that might appeared to be made by a needle, he said.
The injury appeared to confirm rumors that someone at NRG Park was using a needle to jab members of the crowd, one of the possibilities Finner said was under investigation. The police are waiting for medical examiners reports for the eight who died, who ranged in age from 14 to 27.
Some victims among the dead and the 25 who were hospitalized after the melee were trampled as the crowd surged toward the stage, Finner said. Of the injured, 13 people, including one who is 10 years old, remain hospitalized.
The probe will include the permitting and planning, security and medical staffing and more. Scott’s staff and the event promoter, Live Nation, are cooperating with the investigation.
”This remains a very active investigation. There are a lot of questions that still need to be answered and a lot of people that we need to talk to,” Finner said.