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Rong-Gong Lin II and Matt Hamilton

'I tried to do CPR and nothing was working': 3 die after attending Hard Summer rave near Fontana


HARD Summer has been making headlines following the deaths of three attendees this past weekend in Southern California. While many reports include conjecture and hear-say about what actually occurred, this story from the LA Times includes accounts from first responders on the scene.

This article originally appeared on LA Times

Three people died after attending a rave this weekend in the Inland Empire, the latest in a series of deaths that have fueled debate about safety and the need for stricter regulations of such concerts.

The victims were stricken at the Hard Summer rave, which was moved from the Los Angeles County fairgrounds in Pomona last year after two college students died of drug overdoses. This year’s Hard Summer was held at the Auto Club Speedway near Fontana, and despite last year’s deaths saw record attendance.

Drug overdoses have been a recurring problem at electronic dance music festivals, where Ecstasy and similar club drugs are often used for their stimulating and euphoric effects.

Before this weekend, there have been at least 24 confirmed drug-related deaths nationwide since 2006 among people who went to raves organized by Los Angeles-area companies. Twelve have died in Southern California — four in San Bernardino County and eight in L.A. County — and five in the Las Vegas area.

Officials emphasized that they were still trying to determine causes of death for the concertgoers who died this weekend. One was found unresponsive, another had a seizure and a third was believed to be experiencing chest pain, L.A. County sheriff’s spokeswoman Jodi Miller said.

They were identified as Derek Lee, 22, of San Francisco and San Diego State student Alyssa Dominguez, 21, of San Diego, both of whom died Sunday, and UC Riverside student Roxanne Ngo, 22, of Chino Hills, who was declared dead on Monday.

Angel Ghaemi, 22, of Palos Verdes Estates, said she had been waiting for hours to leave a traffic-choked parking lot after the concert when she encountered a woman — who she later realized was Dominguez — dying.

Ghaemi, who said she was sober and had not consumed drugs, looked to her left at about 1:15 a.m. Sunday and saw a police officer attempting to give a woman CPR on a patch of grass in the parking lot.

Ghaemi ran over and said the woman’s pupils were completely dilated and she lacked a pulse.

“I tried to do CPR and nothing was working,” Ghaemi said. “We really needed a defibrillator and an ambulance,” but the congestion in the parking lot seemed to slow first-responders. “I was there for 15 minutes until the ambulance came, and there was nothing they could do.


Read the full story in the LA Times by Rong-Gong Lin II and Matt Hamilton

Tags : HARD Summer LA Times