Drake "Questioned for Several Hours" in Astroworld Crowd Surge Deposition

Photo via @champagnepapi on Instagram

BY Calum SlingerlandPublished Nov 10, 2023

Drake was "questioned for several hours" in a deposition concerning the fatal 2021 crowd surge at Travis Scott's Astroworld festival in Houston, TX, which killed 10 people and left dozens injured.

Rolling Stone cites two sources who confirmed that lawyers deposed the Canadian yesterday (November 9), after he was named alongside Scott, concert promotion giant Live Nation and more in hundreds of lawsuits filed in Harris County following the festival.

The publication notes that sources weren't able to comment further beyond confirming the deposition had taken place, due to a "rigid publicity order" preventing details of the case from emerging. When reached for comment, a rep for Drake told Rolling Stone that "due to orders in the case, I don't feel it is appropriate to comment on the matter."

Drake was invited onstage toward the end of Scott's headlining festival appearance as a surprise guest, performing songs with his American collaborator, including their 2018 hit "SICKO MODE." In subsequent suits against them, the two artists were accused of "inciting the crowd" and encouraging an aggressive performance environment. Rolling Stone notes that in legal filings, Drake has maintained that he had no involvement in planning or organizing the festival.

Days after the incident, Drake shared a statement on Instagram which read, in part, "My heart is broken for the families and friends of those who lost their lives and for anyone who is suffering. I will continue to pray for all of them, and be of service in any way I can. May God be with you all."

In June, a grand jury decided not to criminally charge Scott and five other parties involved with the Astroworld festival following a 19-month investigation into the crowd crush. Rolling Stones notes that the UTOPIA artist was initially deposed in September, and met with attorneys again in early October following the filing of an emergency motion by plaintiff attorneys to obtain phone records regarding the event.

Ahead of the deposition, Scott's attorney had said that the rapper's phone "fell off a boat in January of 2022 and landed somewhere at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico and is not able to be retrieved," but added that messages between the artist and manager David Stromberg retrieved from the latter's device "would show the vast majority, if not all, relevant texts" from Scott.

Scott is currently on a North American tour behind UTOPIA, slated to pull through Drake's home city of Toronto in the final days of 2023. It marks the artist's first trek since the Astroworld tragedy.

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