Threat of ‘gang violence’ prompts City of Abilene to cancel concert

Crime

ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – The City of Abilene has canceled an upcoming concert due to the threat of ‘gang violence,’ but the show could still take place within city limits. 

Boosie Badazz initially signed an agreement to rent the Abilene Convention Center for a concert on Feb. 8.

However, after police received an anonymous tip that there would be gang violence at the concert, the City made the decision to cancel the event and refund all fees paid on behalf of the Boosie Badazz show. 

A press release states, “research was conducted in relation to previous concerts in other cities, and the Department learned that there had been violence during several concerts. One such concert left three people shot and one dead.”

Despite the cancelation, Boosie Badazz is working to secure another venue here in Abilene to host his show – the Taylor County Expo Center. 

Expo Center officials say the concert is still pending and released a statement that reads in part, “At this time we are attempting to work out many details regarding the concert. We have not signed a contract as we are still discussing various aspects of the event. Security is one of the details we are working on.”

Ramon Moreno, promoter of the event, says he would’ve rather discussed all options first.

“I would have rather, ‘let’s talk through it and let’s see what measures we had in place,'” Moreno says. “Us as the promoters and our security working with APD to prevent that from happening versus ‘let’s cancel first.'”

Moreno says he respects the decision, but it has also caused them some logistical problems.

“Obviously Abilene is trying to protect the city and they made their decision based on the facts they had and I respect that,” Moreno says. “I mean, obviously we were dissappointed because we had to move venues so late in the game and we have a lot of financial responsibility with this show that we can’t get out of.”

The full statement from the Abilene Police Department reads as follows: 

The Police Department became aware of a planned Boosie Badazz concert in Abilene on Saturday, February 8, 2019. The venue was originally planned to be held at the Abilene Convention Center. On January 21, 2019, the Police Department received a tip on Crime Stoppers that indicated gang violence would occur at the concert. Research was conducted in relation to previous concerts in other cities, and the Department learned that there had been violence during several concerts. One such concert left three people shot and one dead. It is important to note that the violence did not occur inside the venue, but instead when people were leaving the concert. The Department relayed its concerns to City Administration. Rather than risk the public’s safety, the City of Abilene chose to cancel the rental agreement and fully refund the event host’s rental fees. The City’s decision is based solely on what is believed to be a credible threat to the public’s safety. The event sponsor has decided to hold the concert at another venue. However, the sponsor has asked Abilene Police to provide a paid law enforcement presence. The Department has agreed to such services and will be present at the new venue. Citizens should be mindful of the reported threat of violence and make informed decisions

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