The parents of a 22-year-old overdose victim filed suit against Live Nation earlier this month for the promoter’s alleged negligence, which the couple say resulted in their daughter’s wrongful death during the 2016 edition of HARD Fest in Fontana, California, Billboard reports.
The suit arrived a year to the day that 22-year old Roxanne Ngo overdosed on MDMA at the festival. Her parents and legal team argue that Ngo’s death was preventable, and largely due to the festival being over-capacity, which put strains on the limited numbers of staff, paramedics, and police. Ngo was one of three attendees who died that year, and one of six attendees who’ve died at the festival since 2013.
HARD Fest went on as planned this year, and more efforts were made to address concerns about the festival. According to Billboard, “this year the event was moved to Glen Helen Ampitheater in Devore, California, and San Bernandino County’s Board of Supervisors worked with Live Nation to create a rave task force to minimize injuries. At this year’s festival, 107 were arrested and 19 were hospitalized, but no one died.”
It’s unclear whether the departure of HARD Fest’s founder, Gary Richards, which was announced earlier this week, has any relation to the suit or concerns about whether the festival and its promoter are capable of providing a safe experience for attendees.
Richards founded HARD Fest in 2007. The festival expanded to an events company, helmed by Richards, that also organized summer tours and the EDM cruise Holy Ship!. HARD Events were acquired by Live Nation in 2012.