An attorney for Travis Scott has rebuked what he claims are discrepancies from officials during the ongoing investigation into the events surrounding the Astroworld tragedy. While Scott was performing, there was a massive surge in the crowd that left at least eight people dead and hundreds injured.
“There has been multiple finger-pointing, much of which has been by city officials, who have sent inconsistent messages and have backtracked from original statements,” Edwin McPherson said in a statement to Rolling Stone. “Houston Police Chief Troy Finner was quoted in the New York Times as saying ‘You cannot just close when you got 50,000 and over 50,000 individuals. We have to worry about rioting, riots, when you have a group that’s that young.’ Yet, just a short time later, Chief Finner states the responsibility to stop the show falls on Travis.” (A rep for the Houston Police Department declined Rolling Stone‘s request for comment pending the ongoing investigation.)
“It was reported that the Operations Plan designated that only the festival director and executive producers have authority to stop the show, neither of which is part of Travis’s crew,” McPherson added. “This also runs afoul of HPD’s own previous actions when it shut down the power and sound at this very festival when the performance ran over 5 minutes back in 2019.”
As CNN and others reported, the plan laid out a chain of command in the event of an incident, naming the executive producer and festival director as the sole individuals who can stop the concert.
“Investigations should start proceeding over finger-pointing so that together, we can identify exactly what transpired and how we can prevent anything like this from happening again,” McPherson concluded.
Since the deadly tragedy on Friday, conflicting and unconfirmed narratives have surfaced, which multiple outlets cited. One such narrative involved a story that a security guard had been injected with a mysterious substance while working the event. Police and sources close to Astroworld had previously pushed the injection narrative when the story was beginning to unfold. Several outlets including TMZ had previously cited an Astroworld source.
On Wednesday, Finner walked back the story during a press conference. “We did locate that security guard. His story is not consistent with that. He says he was struck in his head, he went unconscious and he woke up in the security tent,” Finner said. “He says that no one injected drugs into him. So we want to clear that part up.”