A nine-year-old boy has become the youngest person to die from injuries sustained during a crowd surge at a Travis Scott concert in Houston.
Ezra Blount from Dallas is now the tenth person to die following the incident at the Astroworld music festival.
He died on Sunday at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston, family lawyer Ben Crump said.
Nine others, aged between 14 and 27, were also killed in the crush during the headliner’s set, and hundreds more were injured – including Ezra who was placed in a medically induced coma after suffering serious injuries.
Ezra’s father, Treston Blount, described what happened at the festival on a GoFundMe page that he set up to support his son’s medical expenses.
He said Ezra was sitting on his shoulders before the crowd surge crushed them.
Mr Blount lost consciousness, and when he came around, his son was missing.
A frantic search ensued until the boy was eventually found at the hospital, severely injured.
Ezra suffered severe damage to his brain, kidney, and liver after being “kicked, stepped on, and trampled, and nearly crushed to death”, his family said in a lawsuit filed against Scott and the event’s organiser, Live Nation.
The Blount family is seeking at least $1m (£744,600) in damages.
The mayor of Houston, Sylvester Turner, said he was “saddened” to learn of Ezra’s death.
I am saddened to learn of Ezra’s death this evening. Our city tonight prays for his mom, dad, grandparents, other family members and classmates at this time. They will need all of our support in the months and years to come. May God give them strength. RIP Ezra. st #AstroWorld pic.twitter.com/Ankq7FMa3l
— Sylvester Turner (@SylvesterTurner) November 15, 2021
Around 300 people were treated at the festival site following the surge, while 13 were hospitalised.
Surveillance video provided by concert promoter Live Nation is currently being reviewed by Houston police and fire department investigators, along with dozens of clips shared on social media.
Investigators are also planning to speak with Live Nation representatives, Scott and concertgoers.
Scott, 29, who is in a relationship with reality TV star and businesswoman Kylie Jenner, and the event organisers are now the focus of a criminal investigation.
He has come in for criticism since the event for carrying on his performance as ambulances and emergency teams entered the crowd at the Houston venue.
Speaking to NBC’s Today show, when asked if Scott should have stopped his show, Houston fire chief Samuel Pena said: “Absolutely. Everybody at that event has a responsibility, starting from the artist… down.”
He added: “At one point, there was an ambulance that was trying to make its way through the crowd. And he’s got, the artist has, command of that crowd.
“The artist, if he notices something that’s going on, he can certainly pause that performance, turn on the lights and say, ‘Hey, we’re not going to continue until this thing is resolved’.”
During his set, Scott could be heard at one point asking security to help someone in the crowd who had collapsed – but he then carried on.
The rest of the festival was cancelled.
It was previously revealed that the festival’s emergency plan had not considered the potential for crowd surges.
The head of Houston’s police force revealed they had also “expressed concerns” to Scott ahead of the festival.
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