Travis Scott's lawyer speaks out against 'finger-pointing' following Astroworld Festival tragedy

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Travis Scott's lawyer has claimed Houston city officials have been "finger-pointing" following the fatal crowd surge during the rapper's Astroworld Festival.

The Sicko Mode star was performing his headlining set in NRG Park in Houston, Texas on Friday when the crowd surged, killing at least eight people and injuring many more.

In a statement issued to outlets including People on Wednesday, the rapper's lawyer Edwin F. McPherson said there has been "finger-pointing" by city officials in the wake of the tragedy and accused them of sending "inconsistent messages" and backtracking from original statements.

"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,'" McPherson said in his statement. "Yet, just a short time later, Chief Finner states the responsibility to stop the show falls on Travis."

During a press conference on Wednesday, Finner stated that local officials did not have the power to end Scott's set.

"The ultimate authority to end the show is with the production and the entertainer," he said, although he added later that he didn't want to "point fingers" until the investigation was complete.

McPherson continued, "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. This also runs afoul of HPD's (Houston Police Department's) own previous actions when it shut down the power and sound at this very festival when the performance ran over five minutes back in 2019.

"Investigations should start proceeding over finger-pointing so that together, we can identify exactly what transpired and how we can prevent anything like this from happening again."

At the press conference, Finner stated that it was too early in the investigation to establish a definitive timeline of events. However, he insisted police officers told event organisers to stop the show when a festivalgoer required CPR. He also confirmed a festival security guard was not injected with drugs, as had been previously speculated.

Scott told fans he was "devastated" about the incident and will cover the funeral costs of the victims. He has cancelled upcoming shows, including a one-off concert in Saudi Arabia, following the tragedy.

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