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Criminal probe launched into stampede at Texas festival that killed 8

Criminal probe launched into stampede at Texas festival that killed 8

Image Credit: Todd Spoth

Texas security officials announced on Saturday that they were investigating the series of events that led up to the mass stampede during the performance of rapper Travis Scott at the Astroworld festival in Harris County on Friday that killed 8 people and injured dozens of others. Around 50,000 people had gathered for the concert when the stampede occured at approximately 9:30 PM on Friday night.

City Police Chief Troy Finner said his department has opened a criminal investigation by homicide and narcotics detectives following unconfirmed reports that someone in the audience "was injecting other people with drugs."

A police officer reported being pricked in the neck with what felt like a needle while attempting to restrain an unruly member of the concert, only to be revived later with an anti-opiate. Other witnesses and security officials have also claimed that during the stampede a large number of people suddenly went into cardiac arrest or fell unconscious. The youngest victim of the stampede is 14 years old with a ten year old also rumoured to be in the list of the injured. 13 people are still in treatment for injuries sustained during the incident.

Rapper Scott released a statement on social media condemning the events and expressing his shock and sorrow. Terming what happened as a "tragic incident", the rapper said he was "extremely devastated" and was willing to extend all cooperation to everyone who had been affected.

He had stopped the concert multiple times after noticing the press of the crowd against the barriers erected in front of the performance area but in his statement said that he was unaware of the true scale of the incident. Concert goers reported a suddenly push towards the barriers as well as unruly and disruptive behaviour before the stampede began, including people jumping on medical vehicles trying to make their way through the crowd.

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