One Fan Dead, 20 Hospitalized at Mad Decent Block Party

Police believe drug overdoses were the cause

mad decent block party
Roger Kisby/Getty
The crowd at the Mad Decent Block Party in Brooklyn in 2013
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UPDATE: According to Virginia news site Insidenova.com, a second person has died after attending the Mad Decent Block Party Friday night. Police have not disclosed the victim's name, but said that a 17-year-old male died Sunday evening of a drug overdose after attending the festival.

One fan died and more than 20 others were hospitalized during the Mad Decent Block Party on Friday in Columbia, Maryland. Police sources told the Baltimore Sun that the death and illnesses were from apparent drug overdoses.

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Drugs, Death and Dance Music

Tyler Fox Viscardi, a 20-year-old man from Raleigh, North Carolina, was rushed from the concert at the Merriweather Post Pavilion around 9 p.m. and taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead. A 17-year-old boy was also hospitalized in critical condition after apparently overdosing at the show. Police have not identified which drugs they or the other people hospitalized from the concert had been taking.

Police also arrested three people at the show. One arrest was for possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, one was for domestic assault, and one for assault on an officer. They also issued 50 citations for under-age drinking.

Seth Hurwitz, operator of the Merriweather Post Pavilion, issued a statement on the incident. "Our hearts go out to the family as they face the unimaginable," the statement said. "As a parent, it makes me horribly sad beyond words to think of a tragedy like this. We can spend every minute of the day making perfect sense to our children regarding the obvious perils of drugs, but sometimes it is impossible to convince them that this is relevant to their world."

Mad Decent Block Party, currently in its sixth year, boasted a Friday night lineup including Diplo, Sleigh Bells, Flux Pavilion and Wolfgang Gartner. Diplo, who helped found the touring festival, addressed the death over Twitter. "Our hearts go out to everyone impacted by yesterday’s event," he wrote. "We are truly devastated."