Edwin F. McPherson, an attorney representing Travis Scott, released a statement on Wednesday regarding the investigation into the Astroworld tragedy that claimed the lives of eight people and injured scores more in Houston, Texas. In the statement, McPherson complained of “finger-pointing” by city officials.
“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,” McPherson told Rolling Stone in a statement. “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.”
McPherson went on to cite the festival’s 56-page operations plan, which was obtained and reported on by CNN earlier in the week. The plan reportedly outlined that the show’s executive producer and festival organizer were the only individuals who had the authority to stop the festival. The document also lacked a contingency plan in the event of a surging crowd despite three people being hospitalized at Astroworld 2019 after being trampled.
“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 wrote. “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.”
McPherson added: “Investigations should start proceeding over fingerpointing so that together, we can identify exactly what transpired and how we can prevent anything like this from happening again.”
In other news, TMZ reports that Houston Police who were at the Astroworld festival were seen recording Travis Scott and Drake as they were performing and seemed to be unaware that a “mass casualty event” had occurred. The footage shows the officers recording Scott nearly 30 minutes after the deadly incident occurred. A video that was shot by Alex Soto shows officers pulling out thier phones at 10:02 p.m. The festival was declared a mass casualty event at 9:38 p.m.