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Teenage girl dies of suspected drug overdose after attending weekend rave at L.A. Coliseum [Updated]

A 15-year-old girl has died of a suspected drug overdose after attending a rave over the weekend at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, a hospital official said Tuesday.

The girl was one of two rave attendees who were in critical condition at California Hospital Medical Center after the 14th annual Electric Daisy Carnival. According to the event's website, guests had to be at least 16 to attend, raising questions about how the girl gained admission.

She and the other critically ill patient had been taken to the downtown Los Angeles hospital by ambulance directly from the venue, officials said. Both were treated for drug intoxication in the  intensive care unit.

“She came in as an emergency patient from the rave. She was in respiratory arrest when she got here, and she never recovered,” said Katreena Salgado, a spokeswoman for the hospital.

Salgado said the 15-year old girl arrived non-responsive and never woke up. She died shortly before 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.

A full determination of the drugs in the dead teen's system will not be known until an autopsy and toxicology tests are completed. 

[Updated at 5:50 p.m.: Pat Lynch, who manages the Coliseum, was stunned to learn of the death Tuesday.

“Oh, no. Oh, my God,” Lynch said. “I don’t know what to say. That’s just terrible.”

When asked how a 15-year-old was able to get into the event when the minimum age for entry was 16, Lynch said he needed to investigate.

"I'm at a loss," Lynch said. "... Sixteen is what the promoter requested, and I just don’t know….  I've got to  find that information."]

The event, held Friday and Saturday, drew about 185,000 people to carnival rides, five stages and performances by Moby, Will.i.am, Steve Aoki and Deadmau5. About 120 required transport to local hospitals, mostly for drug intoxication.

The volume of patients in need of hospital care led several emergency room physicians on Monday to call for an end to raves at the Coliseum.

Cathy Chidester, director of the county Emergency Medical Systems agency, said Monday that officials treat raves at the Coliseum like a "multi-casualty incident," which she said was similar to planning for a disaster like the Chatsworth Metrolink train crash, which killed 25 and left more than 130 others injured.

Tuesday's death was the latest in a string of high-profile problems at raves held at public venues. Earlier this year, at least 18 drug overdoses tied to Ecstasy were reported at a New Year's Eve rave at the Los Angeles Sports Arena — next to the Coliseum. And two men died of suspected drug overdoses during a Memorial Day weekend rave at the Cow Palace in Daly City, south of San Francisco.

-- Rong-Gong Lin II

Comments () | Archives (106)

EDC is a music festival/ Rave..what ever floats your boat..but that is besides the point..when attending such events such as this, responsibilities related to things like drug use is in the sole hands of the user...im sorry for the lose but kids these days know what the consequences of drug use is especially x..people need to stop blaming others for problems like this..this could happen any where ..friends house..parties etc..or even alcohol posioning for the matter..the fact that it happens at a single socialized event draws attention to the matter.. as far for insomniac, make the events 18+ so you don't have to deal with negative attention drawn towards their event like this again..because lets be honest if this was a 19 male that died it wouldnt be on the front page

This article was also posted on CBS, my question is, where were the parents?

Sure, Raves are huge venues to do drugs, but the bottom line is, this was a 16+ event and the girl was 15. The parents need to take some responsibility before they start trying to blame Insomniac or EDC. People need to be more responsible for their own actions, and need to stop trying to blame others for their problems. People get in car accidents all the time right? Yet it doesn't stop us from driving.

Rong-Gong Lin II,

How many people die of suspected overdoses in Los Angeles a day?

Why aren't all their stories front page news?

My friend's sister died in her apartment last week of an prescription opiod (opiate derivative) overdose give to her by her boyfriend. She was 23.

Why wasn't THAT on the front page of the L.A. Times? She didn't even get an obituary.

But this is front page news.

Bad journalism.

This is being reported because why? Am I suppose to be saddened by this death? It only reinforces that question. Are people born STUPID? Or they learned to be STUPID. I am not going to lose because of one's stupidity.

As a parent of one of the many ravers, and talking with my young adult about the experience, I came away feeling like it was as safe as could be, except for some "dumb" kids who would have spoiled any party they attended. I can only think about the stories of the concerts the Beatles and the Rolling Stones held many years ago. Stories of pushing, drugs, alcohol, and mass confusion with the crowds and law enforcement. Then there are the more recent events - the Lakers game when they took the title. Weren't there injuries, property damage, attacks on law and emergency personnel by the crowds? Sounds to me like LA needs to get their priorities straight and their facts lined up as to what precipitates the most damage - unorganized rioting after a sporting event (and not the first time), or a fairly well organized event where irresponsible youth were once again showing their stupidity! Sorry for the loss of one young life, though. No amount of reasoning can restore that loss.

Stop pointing fingers!
The responsibility and blame falls solely on the parents and the teen...period!!!
The Coliseum, promotoers or whomever are all free of fault.
That is the problem with the U.S., always pointing the finger and blame on everyone else!
I am now 40, I use to rave, and I am still alive because I was careful!

I went to EDC and had a great time (drug free). I have never seen so many people together in one place, being so respectful to each other. We were just all there to enjoy the music. Unfortunately, some people do think that they need to get high in order to experience things "right". I do not agree.

While there, I looked around at the people walking by and saw a boy who couldn't have been more than 12 years old. I even saw a woman in her 30's carrying her baby boy (1 or 2 years old tops). That is just disgusting.

It's awful what happened to this girl, but EDC is not entirely at fault. I agree that it should be 18+, but at the same time where were her parents?

Drug use doesn't tend to just start at EDC, many people have used prior to a major event like this. This built up and could have been avoided had it been caught ahead of time. Too bad drug use is often far too hard to see, especially among young teens who are going through so much at that age anyway.

My heart goes out to the family.

I agree that raves should not be 16+. Make kids wait until they are 18 or 21 to have that experience. Yes, drugs are a huge part of that scene and always will be. But if you think about it, pretty much everyone in this country has a "drug" that they use to escape from their everyday lives, some are just healthier than others. I wasn't there but I can imagine it was a beautiful scene. With 90% of the people on E, there wasn't an ounce of negative energy in the place!

And its really all about the music anyway!

Age policy violator is also an illegal drug user. Big surprise. She was playing Russian Roulette, and she lost.

If over 185,000 people attended and one died and 100-ish had to go to the hospital because of overdosing, that's actually a really LOW number.

People that are saying that the City of LA should not have these events on city property are oblivious to the SERIOUS financial problems the city is having both in the public and private sector. Events that draw 185,ooo, many of which are travelling to the city from other areas and spending money--these are a much needed boost for the local economy.

People were paying $60-100 for a ticket, parking lots were charging $60 to park for a night, lots of individuals were making money selling glowing trinkets and hotdogs outside of the venue, and yes, the drug dealers saw brisk business too. But if you were at the event, you would never know we were in a recession.

Should we ban basketball because of the jerks who ran crazy after the Lakers won the championship? And then let's ban alcohol too because some jerks can't stop drinking and driving. When does it stop?

According to the event's website that was listed, one has to be at least 16 years old or must be with legal guardian. This would explain how the girl was able to gain access to the rave.

What about alcohol??!?!?!
People die EVERYDAY from DUI, alcohol fights, alcohol related etc.
Think about the percentage of users who die from each drugs.

DO NOT cancel raves.
People will use the drugs no matter where and what
Instead, EDUCATE them about it.

It is all about moderation. These kids don't know their limits.
sigh. I love going to raves. Dancing to the music is one of the best things in my life.

MCOM..so what you're trying to say is the the Brown and Blacks folks were rioting during a Laker game..but it's okay for the the spoiled White & Asian kids to do drugs?

If there is an age limit it's up to the venue to check and try to make sure kids don't get in..I agree with the point that U should at least be 18 to attend these types of events. Especially since everyone knows there will be extensive drug use.

But don't give the white kids a pass...because the same things that happen at a RAP concert happen at a Rave concert, but it ALL gets looked at differently from white America.

How can something be organized when folks are fighting, jumping over fences, and using drugs along with drinking? Isn't the legal age for drinking, 21?

The City Hould shearch everyone that attend these events they could save a lot of lives and get drug dealers off the streets.

Rong-Gong Lin II: SOMEONE STOP THIS GUY. Dude seriously, you must be bored over there at the LA Times. One of the most amazing things we have in L.A. is the underground (and commercial) DJ Culture and dance scene. Everything you report is totally pointless. It means nothig and is sensational only. It's a music festival, not a rave and obviously where there are 185,000 people there will be hundreds of medical issues and incidents, duh fool. You're such a useless waste of space in Los Angeles. You're stupid reports are creating a negative impact on the scene is L.A. that is valuable to the culture of this city. Someone should fire you.

What Really Angers Me Is This .... What In The H***Kind Of Mother Allows A Her Fifteen Year Old UNSUPERVISED ! UNCHAPERONED ! Daughter (A Minor Mind You ) To A Hell Hole Like That ! PERIOD !! FIFTEEN YEARS OLD ??? Where Was This Mothers MIND ?? !! And Watching Her On The News Was Painful As A Parent ... But Thats What Happens When You Just Don't Take Care Of Your Children !!! What A Horrible Lesson To Learn ...IF The Mother Learned .... I Bet You This Mother WISHES She Could Take It All Back This World Is So Full Of EVIL And Wicked People .... Now This Lovely Child Is Gone ... Forever ... And You Know What Sasha Was A Childhood Friend Of My Daughter , And At This Very Moment My Daughter Is Greiving For The Loss Of Her Friend ... And So Am I ..... For My Daughter .. For Her Friend ... For The Mother .....

This was definitely a rave. I was there and everyone i know and ran into was on something. These events such as Monster Massive, Love Festival, EDC, etc are all raves and everyone that goes there knows it. Promoters make millions and only care about how much money they take in. They don't even check you at the gates or provide real security. They'll let anyone in with anything so i'm not surprised this 15 yr old girl got in. Another thing, gate rushing is common with these events and the gates are flimsy. The group of people I was with almost got stampeded. Security was a joke. I smell a lawsuit coming.

I agree, 18 and over.

Shut down all future events like this simply because you know her parents and others won't sue the promoter, they'll sue the deep pockets, the owners of the Coliseum, the taxpayers of L.A., L.A. County, & the state of California.

OK PhilMe .... when did we put a "color", or race, to this discussion. I would imagine you have no idea what race, color, or upbringing I am from. Nor should it matter. The discussion is on activities, happening in LA, and how the leaders respond. They knew what would happen with any crowd activity, no matter what the venue. And it is not to say that drugs, alcohol, and idiocy were the cause of the problems at the rave as well as the Lakers "party". But the likelihood is very strong that these were the primary issues, not race, creed, or color of the people. Just poor judgement and stupidity that comes with life, drugs, and alcohol!!

It would be a great idea for the organizers to post 18 as the minimum age for this type of event. Agreed. And perhaps limiting the number of attendees so law enforcement, emergency services, and the city leaders have less to complain about. It seems like they are quite selective on what events to trash on and what events to ignore! Not all sporting events are as well organized, activity enriched and as awesome to experience as some of these band/music festival type events are.

After all is said, better it was in a community than in the middle of nowhere where the attendees might feel they could get away with anything, or do anything, since law enforcement would not be highly present around the event, just security.

I feel bad for that girl's family. I was actually at the event both Friday and Saturday and it wasn't as bad as the news made it seem. I'm always sober at these events because believe it or NOT I go for the music and a lot of people do too but of course the news will only focus on the negative, nothing new. For the future I hope these raves become at least 18 yrs and over because most of the people who were acting out of control were underage kids. I want the good vibes that raves offer back!!

Keyboard warriors with nothing better to do.
How about teaching your kids right from wrong. Does her mom really think that was her first time taking an illegal drug? It's always the clueless reaction that gets me, "Oh my god I had no idea!" Exactly.
It's not the festivals fault for bringing people together. Music+People+Events=A good time or not. Play at your own risk.
Mainstream media will always go for the fear mongering. Monkey see monkey do. L.A. Times is no different. Search their articles & I'll guarantee that you'll find previous related articles praising the event organizers for pulling off such a feat.

I did this whole "massive" thing back in the early 2000's. Don't be fool people... events such as this is all about DRUGS! X is the main drug abused. You can just tell by 12am or 1am who in there are under the influence. All of them are usually sitting on the ground and zoning with their eyes roll back.

I hope these promoters are held responsible and punished by a court of law. They know full well that these events are filled with dangerous drug use and for them to have a minimum age limit of 16 is RIDICULOUS!

i attended this event BOTH days and personally i dont believe it was the promoters fault
it was the girls fault
she was dumb enough to take the drug [ no offense ]
i am only 16 i was of the age limit to attend and i stayed SOBER
in my opinion it was the securities fault because they didnt even ask for identification to prove your age
i was astonished as to how many little kids i saw
i dont believe they should be restricted to 18+ or to be banned at all
the media just loves to make a big deal about everything
kids die everyday because of drugs and they dont document that
but when a girl dies at a MUSIC FESTIVAL "not a rave" they make a huge deal

This is drivel masquerading as journalism. Sensationalism at its worst.

There is always the potential for casualties at large events such as this. Seeing the media coverage regarding EDC so far, you'd think that this was a uniquely deprived and dangerous event. Sorry, it's simply a concert/rave/festival, just like any other.

At last count, this year's Glastonbury had 141,666 attendees and 2 deaths. Where's the outrage?

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