Criminal investigation launched into deaths at Houston festival

Criminal investigation launched into deaths at Houston festival
© AP

Authorities confirmed on Sunday that a criminal investigation is underway following the deaths of eight people during a stampede at a Travis Scott concert in Houston, reported USA Today.

The newspaper noted that Houston Mayor Sylvester TurnerSylvester TurnerGood news: We have reason to 'lift every voice and celebrate' Astroworld death toll rises to 10 after 9-year-old dies from injuries Criminal investigation launched into deaths at Houston festival MORE told CNN that the investigation "will take weeks, if not longer," and that investigators have already begun reviewing the incident.

A witness at the event claimed that the crowd was "out of control" before the show, which attracted 50,000 fans, even opened, reports USA Today.

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Officials have also announced the arrests of 25 people during the concert; however, it was not clear if the arrests were linked to the deaths and injuries at the venue.

Houston's fire chief pointed to issues with crowd control, noting the event is typically limited to 200,000 people but only 50,000 were permitted to attend this year's festival, reports USA Today. 

Texas Gov. Greg AbbottGreg AbbottAll hostages free, safe after hours-long standoff at Texas synagogue: governor Florida Democrats call on DeSantis to accept federal help to expand COVID-19 testing Overnight Defense & National Security — US, Russia have face-to-face sit down MORE (R) has directed state agencies to offer available resources to Houston officials to aid in the investigation.

Scott issued condolences on Saturday. 

“I’m absolutely devastated by what took place last night,” he wrote in a tweet.

Scott and the concert organizers are currently facing a lawsuit that claims a "preventable and predictable tragedy" could have been avoided.