Travis Scott and the organisers of the Astroworld event that left eight people dead have been sued by an injured concertgoer who branded it a “predictable and preventable tragedy.”
Lawyers for Manuel Souza filed a petition in Harris County District Court suing Scott, event organiser ScoreMore and concert giant Live Nation over the Friday night incident.
The lawsuit claims the tragedy was the result of “a motivation for profit at the expense of concertgoers’ health and safety” and the “encouragement of violence,” according to Billboard.
“Defendants failed to properly plan and conduct the concert in a safe manner,” wrote Mr Souza’s attorney, Steve Kherkher, of the firm Kherkher Garcia LLP.
“Instead, they consciously ignored the extreme risks of harm to concertgoers, and, in some cases actively encouraged and fomented dangerous behaviors.”
The deaths and injuries happened during chaotic scenes at the first night of the festival, when some in the 50,000 person crowd appeared to surge towards the stage as Scott performed, crushing some of the victims.
Mr Souza’s lawyers state in court papers that the two-day event should have been cancelled on Friday when “concertgoers breached a security gate around the park, stampeded into the premises, and trampled over one another.”
The lawsuit alleges that even after ambulances arrived at the event to treat concertgoers who had “suffered serious obvious injury”, organisers “made the conscious decision to let the show go on, despite the extreme risk of harm to concertgoers that was escalating by the moment.”
“Eventually, due to defendants’ active decision to let the show go on, the scene devolved into a complete melee, resulting in the needless, untimely death of at least eight people and injuries to scores of others,” it states.
The lawsuit alleges negligence and gross negligence and is seeking at least $1m in damages.
Mr Souza’s legal team has asked for a temporary retraining order to prevent the destruction of any evidence in the case.
The lawsuit also focuses on Mr Scott’s behaviour on stage at his live events, which are known for crowd surfing, mosh pits and stage diving.
“This kind of behavior has long been encouraged by the festival’s founder and main performer,” it states.
“His express encouragement of violence has previously resulted in serious violence at numerous past concerts.”
Lawyer Kevin Haynes, who is also involved in the case, told Billboard: “This was unnecessary. This kind of thing is not supposed to happen. There were things that were supposed to be done that were not done.”