Continuing a summer in which concert recaps have begun to read more dispatches from the frontlines of war, this weekend saw more deaths, arrests, and assaults added to a season that’s already seen two people die at Las Vegas’ Electric Daisy Carnival, and a single Keith Urban concert in Boston where more than 20 people were hospitalized for alcohol poisoning, another 50 were taken into protective custody for intoxication, and a large crowd watched as a teenage girl was raped on the lawn. Again, all of these things happened at concerts.
On Friday, a stop of Diplo’s Mad Decent Block Party at Merriweather Post Pavilion ended in two deaths, with one 17-year-old attendee confirmed as succumbing to a drug overdose. Elsewhere, there were 20 hospitalizations and 50 citations for underage drinking, plus three arrests. MPP operator Seth Hurwitz released a statement expressing his dismay over the growing problem of drug abuse at festivals, saying, “This drug epidemic is no longer confined to specific demographics, or time of day, or geography, or lifestyle. It’s just everywhere and, and unfortunately, this generation of teens and 20-somethings has not learned this lesson yet.”
On Saturday, the Rose Bowl stop of Jay Z and Beyoncé’s On The Run tour produced 11 arrests, including eight for public intoxication, and one man who allegedly bit the tip of another man’s finger off after groping his girlfriend. According to police, the 25-year-old suspect, Roberto Alcaraz-Garnica, sexually assaulted a woman, and when her boyfriend intervened, a fight ensued that ended in Alcaraz-Garnica biting off the boyfriend’s fingertip. He’s being charged with suspicion of sexual battery and “disabling or disfiguring a part of a victim’s body.”
Meanwhile, total arrest reports aren’t in for Lollapalooza weekend yet, though the festival was already marred by an incident in which Blood Orange singer Dev Hynes and his girlfriend, Samantha Urbani, said that they were assaulted by security guards following his Friday night set. Hynes had performed while wearing a shirt emblazoned with the names of Trayvon Martin, Oscar Grant, Eric Garner, and Jordan Davis, and used his show as a platform to speak about racism and police brutality. He described the incident in a series of tweets.
Urbani also offered her account.
Urbani later said, in a since-deleted tweet, that they had learned that the security guards were not official Lollapalooza staff. Hynes also issued a call for witnesses, while those who posted comments about the incident on the Lollapalooza Facebook page reported that they were being removed.
Lollapalooza has since offered an official statement on the matter, saying:
Late Friday night, we learned of an incident involving an artist and a security guard on site. Since then, we have been in contact with those involved and the authorities, as we work together to resolve the situation. As always, our top priority is to ensure the safety of everyone at the festival.
Everyone still planning on attending an outdoor concert this summer, please, be careful out there.