Speed Reads

astroworld tragedy

Travis Scott attorney says he was unaware of mass casualty declaration while on stage: 'That never got to Travis'

Travis Scott was not aware of the "full effect" of the tragedy at his Astroworld music festival, where at least nine people died, until the following morning, his attorney says.

Edwin F. McPherson, an attorney for Scott, spoke on Good Morning America on Friday one week after nine people were killed in a deadly crowd surge at the rapper's music festival in Houston. According to The New York Times, Scott's show continued for almost 40 minutes after city officials declared a "mass casualty event." But McPherson told GMA this information never made its way to Scott while he was performing. 

"That never got to Travis," McPherson said. "That never got to Travis' crew. He's up there trying to perform. He does not have any ability to know what's going on down below, certainly on a mass level." 

Houston Fire Chief Samuel Peña has suggested Scott should have paused the show during his performance, telling Today that "at one point, there was an ambulance that was trying to make its way through the crowd," and Scott could have "[paused] that performance, [turned] on the lights and [said], 'Hey, we're not going to continue until this thing is resolved.'" Peña added, though, that he's not "prepared to say that [Scott] was fully aware of what was going on." Scott reportedly went to an afterparty at Dave & Buster's after the show, and McPherson told GMA he "didn't really understand the full effect of everything until the next morning." 

A criminal investigation into the deadly crowd surge is ongoing, and Scott is facing numerous lawsuits. The death toll rose to nine this week after a 22-year-old college student died from injuries sustained during the concert. McPherson told GMA the tragedy was a "systemic breakdown," but he argued it's too early in the investigation to be "pointing fingers at anyone."