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A third Astroworld lawsuit has been settled, Rolling Stone confirms

By | Published on Friday 4 August 2023


Families of three of the ten people who died during the crowd surge at the 2021 Astroworld festival have now settled their legal action against Live Nation and Travis Scott. Two families settled their lawsuits last year and Rolling Stone has now learned that a third family, that of John Hilgert, reached a settlement deal earlier this year.

Ten people died and hundreds more were injured when a crowd surge occurred during Scott’s headline set at the 2021 edition of the Houston-based festival he founded, which was promoted by Live Nation and its Scoremore subsidiary. Hundreds of lawsuits were filed in the wake of the tragedy, including by the families of all of those who died. All that litigation was then consolidated in early 2022 and it has been working its way through the system ever since.

A criminal investigation was also undertaken by the Houston Police Department. That was completed in June this year with a 1266 page report being produced. However, a grand jury concluded that, based on that investigation, there were no grounds for pursuing criminal proceedings against Scott or a number of other people involved in planning and producing the festival.

In terms of the lawsuits, last October a lawyer working for the family of one of the victims who died, Axel Acosta, confirmed that his client had settled their lawsuit. It was also reported at the time, and subsequently confirmed via court records, that the family of another festival-goer who died, sixteen year old Brianna Rodriguez, had likewise settled.

Rolling Stone reported yesterday that the family of John Hilgert have also settled their legal action. It transpires they actually filed papers with the court confirming that a settlement had been reached back in February. Terms of the three settlements negotiated so far are not known.

The HPD made its report into the Astroworld tragedy public at the end of last week. Since then, representatives for Scott have criticised the timing of that report’s publication, it coinciding with the release of the rapper’s first new album since the tragedy.

And they have also hit back at some of the commentary about the report’s contents, stressing the grand jury’s decision that there are no grounds for criminal action against Scott and his team.

Those remarks from Scott’s representatives have in turn been criticised by lawyers still working on Astroworld litigation.

Earlier this week attorney Bob Hilliard, working for the family of the youngest festival-goer to die during the crowd surge, ten year old Ezra Blount, told TMZ: “Of course they would only focus on how the report’s release date hurts their album sales instead of the facts contained inside of the report”.

Reckoning that the HPB report includes “damning” information about how Astroworld was planned and run, he added: “For Mr Scott to allow his lawyers and spokespeople to make the reckless and untrue statement that just because he was not indicted means he’s blame-free is arrogant and insulting to the memory of ten year old Ezra as well as the other victims of this terrible night”.

Those comments have been echoed by lawyer Philip Corboy, who is working for the families of victims Franco Patino and Jacob Jurinek. He is quoted by Rolling Stone as saying: “My clients are concerned with their civil case, they’re not concerned one iota about Travis Scott and the problems he may have with an album release”.

Asked about the contents of the HPD report, he said he felt it shows that the Astroworld crowd surge was “a tragedy just waiting to happen. There are so many different folks who were culpable, if they only stood up and did the right thing at the right time before the show started. It’s disappointing that everyone dropped the ball in this case”.