Police chief warned Travis Scott about crowd before show: report

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Police chief warned Travis Scott about crowd before show: report

Houston Police Chief Troy Finner reportedly visited Travis Scott — whom he knows personally — in his trailer to voice his concerns about the crowd before the deadly Astroworld concert.

A person familiar with Finner’s account told The New York Times that the chief relayed to the rapper that very devoted fans had amassed for the Friday show at NRG Park, where eight people later died when a throng surged the stage.

A police spokeswoman declined to comment to the newspaper about the chief’s private conversations, citing the pending probe into the tragedy.

News about Finner’s concerns comes as at least one concertgoer is suing Scott and the event’s promoters Live Nation and ScoreMore over the “predictable and preventable tragedy.” Several other lawsuits are expected.

“Defendants failed to properly plan and conduct the concert in a safe manner,” lawyers for Manuel Souza, who says he was injured in the mayhem, said in papers filed Saturday in Harris County District Court, Billboard reported.

The crowd watches as Travis Scott performs at Astroworld Festival at NRG park on Friday, Nov.  5, 2021.
The crowd watches as Travis Scott performs at Astroworld Festival at NRG park on Friday, Nov. 5, 2021.
AP

The suit, which seeks at least $1 million in damages, claims the show was unruly from the start, when anxious fans “breached a security gate around the park, stampeded into the premises and trampled over one another” just to get into the sold-out concert.

Scott has a history of inciting fans to ignore security and violently storm the stage — leading to him being arrested twice previously and sued.

He was charged over music festivals in Arkansas in 2017 and in Chicago in 2015 for whipping up hysteria and encouraging moshing that left a guard and concertgoers injured.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner speaks at a press conference after several people died and scores were injured during a music festival the night before.
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner speaks at a press conference after several people died and scores were injured during a music festival the night before.
AP

According to a police timeline of the evening, the concert wasn’t ended until nearly 40 minutes after authorities had declared a “mass casualty event,” The Times said.

Houston Fire Chief Samuel Peña told the paper that the star and the concert organizers could have stepped in to stop the show sooner.

“The one person who can really call for and get a tactical pause when something goes wrong is that performer. They have that bully pulpit and they have a responsibility,” Peña told the paper in a telephone interview Sunday.

Travis Scott performs at Day 1 of the Astroworld Music Festival at NRG Park on Friday, Nov. 5, 2021.
Travis Scott performs at Day 1 of the Astroworld Music Festival at NRG Park on Friday, Nov. 5, 2021.
Amy Harris/Invision/AP

“If somebody would have said, ‘Hey, shut this thing down and turn on the lights until this thing gets corrected’ — and that coming from the person with the mic — I think could have been very helpful,” he added.

Scott said in an Instagram message that he was unaware how bad things had gotten in the crowd.

The rapper and Live Nation declined to respond to specific questions, but said they will cooperate with the probe.  

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