Two California parents have filed a wrongful death lawsuit following their 19-year-old daughter’s fatal drug overdose at a Los Angeles County Fairgrounds rave last August. The lawsuit lists both the event organizer, Live Nation, and the venue operator, the Los Angeles County Fair Association as the defendants responsible.
Parents of the deceased, Mark and Pamela Dix, accuse the defendants of negligence in the wrongful death lawsuit. They allege organizers understood that the HARD Summer rave event would attract “widespread illegal and illicit activity”; notably the sale and use of banned psychoactive drugs, such as the ecstasy/bath salts concoction that killed Katie Dix.
Filed at the end of July in Los Angeles Superior Court, the wrongful death lawsuit additionally cites Los Angeles County, owner of the fairgrounds, as likewise negligent in creating and allowing others to create “a dangerous condition of its public property.”
Such an allegation is evidenced not only in Dix’s fatal overdose but also that of 18-year-old UCLA student Tracy Nguyen of West Covina. Nguyen’s death was attributed to an ecstasy overdose while attending the same rave. In addition to these two deaths, ambulances transported 49 people from the two-day musical event to seven emergency rooms. The plaintiffs point to a total of 24 drug-related deaths at raves organized by Los Angeles-based groups, including those organized by defendant Live Nation.
Ecstasy and ecstasy-based mixtures are frequently found to be the cause of death and sickness at rave-styled events. Emergency room doctors suggest that the underlying problem is that the drug can cause body temperatures to spike to as much as 109 degrees Fahrenheit, causing abrupt organ failure.
Issues also arise both in dehydration and over-hydration. Drinking too much water while on the drug can cause sodium levels to crash and trigger seizures that prevent oxygen from reaching the brain.
During the August 2015 rave event, Katie Dix consumed what she allegedly thought was pure ecstasy, but was instead a noxious mixture laced with bath salts. She collapsed shortly after ingesting the drug but the lawsuit alleges that medical help was delayed by half an hour due to overcrowding and understaffing at the rave. The suit goes on to suggest that Dix could have been saved had more timely medical treatment been available.
While representatives of defendants Live nation, the Fair Association, and Los Angeles have declined to comment, there are no future raves scheduled for the location in 2016.
If you have lost a loved one due to negligence and are in need of a wrongful death lawyer in Torrance or Los Angeles, please contact the Booth & Koskoff office nearest you for a free personal injury case evaluation.