Panicked hip-hop and R&B fans reportedly rushed to the exits of Saturday night’s Lovers and Friends festival in Las Vegas amid reports of gunshots being fired.
Soon, reports erupted online of a ‘stampede’ at the Las Vegas Festival Grounds, with people claiming they were trampled in the rush to leave as screens inside the venue urged festival-goers to remain in place, News 3 Las Vegas reports.
Footage posted online showed thousands of people trying to exit the venue as they walked through the streets in an attempt to get to safety.
Security personnel were then forced to pause the concerts Saturday night, as Metropolitan police investigated the scene.
They ultimately found that the reports of gunfire at the festival grounds were ‘unfounded,’ and the concerts were soon allowed to resume, with Usher taking the stage.
As the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department told TMZ: ‘Shortly after 10pm, a gunfire was reportedly heard near the site of the Lovers and Friends festival, causing a large group of attendees to exit the venue.
‘At this time, there is no evidence of a shooting, and the initial report has been deemed unfounded.’
Police added that three people were taken to a local hospital with minor injuries, and ‘the show has since been summarized.’
Following the confirmation that it was a ‘false alarm,’ festival organizers tweeted: ‘We’d like to thank the local authorities for their quick response.’
Footage posted online showed thousands of hip-hop and R&B fans walking through the streets following reports of gunfire at the Lovers and Friends festival
Some had claimed online they were trampled in the mad rush to leave – and the Metropolitan Police Department later confirmed that three people were taken to the hospital with minor injuries
Lovers and Friends festival organizers tweeted in the aftermath that the show was allowed to continue after the Metropolitan Police Department determined ‘there was a false alarm’
Some exasperated festival-goers took to Twitter in the aftermath of the ‘security incident’ to share how violent their fellow fans became as they made a beeline for the exit.
One user wrote: ‘I truly thought I was going to die tonight, being trampled by people, hearing so many people screaming and crying for their lives.
‘Lovers and Friends music festival was not worth it,’ he continued. ‘I will have PTSD for life!’
Eileen Grafia also wrote that she was ‘traumatized’ by the event, saying: ‘Visually seeing a rush of people coming towards you, other people getting trampled, the fear in everybody’s eyes because people were yelling ‘shooter’ is one of the scariest things I’ve ever experienced.’
And Kia Felicia tweeted that she was one of the people who ‘almost got trampled’ at the music festival ‘and I’m upset they continued the show and showed no concern for those who got hurt.’
Meanwhile, Matt Galilea wrote: ‘Lovers and Friends went from over a dozen trampled and someone seizing at the exit from ‘shooting rumors’ to performing again in 20 mins, and I don’t even think I need to explain how f*** **up that is.’
Thousands of hip-hop and R&B fans attended the music festival Saturday night, which featured performers like Akon
Ja Rule performed at sunset at the Lovers and Friends Music Festival at the Las Vegas Festival Grounds hours before people started running towards the exits
Shortly after the Metropolitan Police determined that reports of gunfire were ‘unfounded,’ Usher took the stage
Fans took to Twitter to express their exasperation at what had transpired
The incident at Lovers and Friend’s comes nearly seven months after 10 concertgoers died of ‘compressed asphyxia’ during a crowd surge at Travis Scott’s Astroworld performance on November 5.
The dead, whose ages ranged from 9 to 27, include Rodolfo ‘Rudy’ Pena, 23; Jacob Jurinek, 20; Franco Patino, 21; Brianna Rodriguez, 16; Danish Baig, 27; Axel Acosta, 21; John Hilgert, 14; Madison Dubiski, 23, Baharti Shahani, 22, and nine-year-old Ezra Blount.
Authorities said they died because the pressure from the crowd surges at the event was so great that it quickly squeezed all the air from the lungs of the victims, causing them to pass out within a minute or so and die because critical organs, such as the heart and brain, were depleted of oxygen.
Hundreds others were injured in the crowd surge, with 300 people treated at the site and 25 were hospitalized in connection with the incident.
In the aftermath, several lawsuits were filed against the rapper, guest performer Drake, promoter Live Nation and individuals affiliated with Houston’s NRG Park and Scoremore Holdings. In total, they are suing the rapper for billions of dollars.
And in December, the House Oversight and Reform Committee announced it had launched an investigation into Live Nation, the promoter of the music festival, sending a letter to Michael Rapino, the company’s president and CEO asking for information about its role in the concert.
Rapper Travis Scott has come under fire after he continued to perform at the Astroworld music festival as a crowd surges led to hundreds of injuries – and ultimately 10 deaths
First responders had to make their way through the crowd to aid those who fell unconscious