Danish Police Blame Pearl Jam for Roskilde

ByABC News

July 20, 2000 -- Police investigating the tragedy at the Roskilde Festival submitted a report to the Danish Parliament finding Pearl Jam, rather than the event’s organizers, “morally responsible” for the disaster that claimed nine lives, according to the U.K. music magazine, NME.

In the report, Roskilde Deputy Chief Constable Bent Rungstrom says, “We have spoken to numerous witnesses who have told us that Pearl Jam are well known for almost appealing for violent behavior.” It also blasted “crowd surfing,” and observed that it was a practice commonly associated with the band.

Another police spokesman in the report, which drew on interviews with over 280 witnesses, observed that “whipping a crowd into a frenzy is appalling under conditions like those at the festival, where the ground was slippery and visibility was poor due to vapor in the air from many thousand people sweating.” On June 30, eight people were killed at the four-day, outdoor rock festival, held 25 miles west of Copenhagen, when a huge crowd pressed forward during Pearl Jam’s main stage performance. In addition to the fatalities, another 26 individuals were taken to area hospitals; a ninth man died the following week from chest injuries sustained in the accident.

Band Denies Danish Police Accusation

Pearl Jam’s manager, Kelly Curtis, issued a statement refuting claims that the band is responsible for the tragic event. Pearl Jam are well known for their exciting live shows, but they have never, in their 10 year history of performing, ‘appealed for violent behavior.’”

ABC News Live

ABC News Live

24/7 coverage of breaking news and live events