Severe Intoxication At Chance The Rapper Concert Leaves Dozens Hospitalized

By Desiree Bowie 07/24/17

Underage drinking was prevalent during the event, according to police.

Image: 
Chance The Rapper
Photo via YouTube

Last Friday, nearly 100 people were hospitalized for severe intoxication after Hot 93.7's Hot Jam concert at the Xfinity Theatre in Hartford, Connecticut. Many of the people who were hospitalized were underage drinkers, according to reports.

According to the Daily Mail, around 21,000 fans were in attendance for the annual summer event which was headlined by Grammy award-winning artist Chance The Rapper. Kyle, PnB Rock and ANoyd also performed during the sold-out concert.

"Tailgating, partying and excessive alcohol consumption was extremely prevalent," said deputy police chief Brian Foley, who was on duty at the event. "As a result, medical staff assigned to the event transported over 90+ patients by ambulance to hospitals in the region."

One 19-year-old who was hospitalized for severe intoxication had a blood alcohol content nearly eight times the legal driving limit, AP reports. 

During the concert, Hartford police issued 50 drinking referrals to underage concertgoers who were caught with alcohol. Many of those cited are expected to appear in court within the next few days. 

Foley took to Twitter to warn parents of young concertgoers about tailgating and pre-gaming with alcohol before the show. He tweeted a series of videos of a crowd of tailgaters with the caption, "Did you drop your teen off at the concert tonight. This is what it looks like. & HPD is enforcing underage drinking in the lots." 

While the number of alcohol-related hospitalizations and drinking referrals was extraordinarily high at Hot Jam, it was certainly not a new phenomenon. 

Back on July 6th, 14 people were arrested for underage drinking at a Zac Brown concert in Hartford, where more than 25,000 people were in attendance, according to Fox 61.

"A 'typical' concert is around 20-30 transports. 60 would be very bad. We had 70 once and 90 (Friday) night," Foley said. "It depends on the act that is in town and the fanbase age."

The night after the Hot Jam concert, pop-country act Lady Antebellum performed at Xfinity Theatre. According to Foley, only 18 underage drinkers were issued drinking referrals and seven people were hospitalized during their show. 

On Saturday, Hartford police met to discuss how to curb alcohol-related issues during live performances.

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Desiree Bowie is a writer and movie lover from Los Angeles, California. Follow her on Twitter @dangerbowie

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