Houston fire chief says Travis Scott ‘absolutely’ should have ended his Friday night concert in Houston after seeing people passing out in the audience, where eight people died as the crowd packed in for a closer look at the rapper.
Speaking on NBC’s Today show Tuesday morning, Fire Chief Samuel Peña said, ‘The artist has command of that crowd.
‘In my opinion – and this is my opinion because everything is going to be fleshed out throughout this investigation – the artist, if he notices something that’s going on, he can certainly pause that performance, turn on the lights, and say, “Hey, we’re not gonna continue until this thing is resolved.'”
Eight people were killed and hundreds were injured in the first night of the third Astroworld Festival, an annual event founded by Scott and named after his highly acclaimed 2018 album. About 50,000 people were in attendance.
The fire chief’s comments come after revelations that Scott has twice pled guilty to inciting mayhem at his shows, including one Arkansas concert where an officer says he ‘lost count’ of those he had to help out of the pit, according to a police report obtained by DailyMail.com.
Regarding Friday’s show, He said;
‘I’m not prepared to say that. I’m not prepared to say that he was fully aware of what was going on.’
Following a performance at Chicago’s Lollapalooza festival in August 2015, Scott pled guilty to reckless conduct after his fans jumped a security barricade. Local news reports say the 29-year-old rapper fled the scene but was arrested shortly after.
The Office of Emergency Management said at the time:
‘The performer played one song and then began telling fans to come over the barricades. Due to the security’s quick response, the situation was remedied immediately and no fans were injured.’
The same cannot be said of his May 13, 2017 show in Roger, Arkansas, for which Scott later pled guilty to disorderly conduct after he encouraged fans to rush the stage and bypass security at the Walmart Arkansas Music Pavilion.