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Astroworld festival: Lawsuit against Travis Scott settled with family of 21-year-old who was ‘crushed,’ attorney says

“Victim Axel Acosta was a beloved son, brother, and student,” an attorney for the family said. He was one of 10 people killed in the November tragedy.
/ Source: NBC News

One of the lawsuits filed against Travis Scott was settled with the family of a 21-year-old man who died last year following a crowd surge at the rapper’s Astroworld music festival, according to the family’s attorney.

The attorney, Tony Buzbee, filed a lawsuit in November seeking more than $750 million on behalf of at least 125 victims, including Axel Acosta, whose family reached a confidential settlement.

“Victim Axel Acosta was a beloved son, brother, and student,” Buzbee said in an emailed statement on Thursday. “He was kind and loving. He is greatly missed. Please keep his family in your prayers.”

The lawsuit named the concert’s organizer, Live Nation, as one of the defendants. The company declined to comment Thursday.

Axel Acosta.
Axel Acosta.Courtesy Joel Acosta

Acosta was “crushed” when a crowd of about 50,000 people at the Nov. 5, 2021 festival began pushing toward the stage at NRG Park in Houston, Texas, the lawsuit said. He went into cardiac arrest and was then trampled, it stated.

The suit alleged that music continued playing for “almost forty minutes” as Acosta lay on the ground. A medical examiner determined that his cause of death was compression asphyxia.

“The victims on that night went to Astroworld for fun,” the suit said. “Neither they nor their families were ever warned that they were walking into an extremely dangerous situation.”

It went on to allege that Scott has a history of encouraging violence at his shows through his lyrics and for encouraging crowds to ignore security and rush the stage. The rapper said in an interview last year with radio host Charlamagne Tha God that he did not immediately know the severity of the situation.

“At the end of the day, these fans are like family so you feel like you just lost something. You do these shows, honestly, for people to have the best experience,” he said. “And just to think that something like this happen, you just try to figure out ... just wrap everything around.”

Nine others were killed in the tragedy and more than 2,000 people needed medical treatment. Hundreds of separate lawsuits have been filed against Scott, whose real name is Jacques Bermon Webster II, and Live Nation accusing them of negligence. Last year, he issued a “general denial” of the claims and asked for multiple suits to be dismissed.

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