Car Drives Into SXSW Festival

Two music fans have been killed, and twenty-three injured after a suspected drunken driver running away from law enforcers crashed through barriers at the South By Southwest carnival in Austin.

Law enforcers in Austin, Texas, say the vehicle crashed through barriers set up temporary for the festival and into the crowd killing a woman and a man on a bicycle.


In a news conference, Art Acevedo, who is the police chief, said that the 21-year-old driver named Rashad Owens, of Killen, crashed and attempted to flee on foot; however, a stun gun was used by an officer to apprehend him.



Acevedo added that the victims were a man from the Netherlands and an Austin woman.

The motorist faces 2 counts of capital murder and also twenty-three counts aggravated assault with a car.



Two other people were in a critical state with severe head injuries and three remained in grave situation. Also, the driver was treated for slight injuries.

The yearly music, interactive and film conference pulls in multitudes to Austin every year. The street had been jammed with revelers just moments earlier, but cleared the vicinity to make a fire lane.




Austin police officers stopped downtown traffic to approximately a square mile for 5 days during the event; transforming roads that are usually full of activity into a huge pedestrian mall to aid festival-goers get to dozens of music venues.

Officers said that the incident began at a gas station when a police on a drunken-driving patrol attempted to stop the silver Toyota sedan. The vehicle took off, careening between parked vehicles, and then heading wrong way down a one-way street at high speed.



The motorist crashed into barricades, three wooden pieces held up metal poles, placed on Red River Street near The Mohawk nightclub, where manifold acts were to perform.

Overlooking the street, Ally Hulton, 28, from Los Angeles, was on her friend’s apartment balcony when he spotted the vehicle driving at full speed before hitting a person.

Roland Swenson, who is the managing director of SXSW, said that the festival would go on since there were thousands of visitors in town.




A crime scene unit was still probing the crash, and Acevedo said previously that there were no plans to change security protocols at the event because of the incident.

He requested witnesses and those who may have captured the footage to get in touch with the police instead of posting it online.

In spite of the events occurring downtown, singer Jay Z and Kanye West performed a 2 hour show at Austin Music Hall.

Every year, the well-liked Southwest festival, called SXSW, brings multitudes of visitors to Austin, Texas.

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