TWO DIE AT HOLMDEL OZZFEST
Even amid a summer-long crackdown on underage drinking at the PNC Arts Center in Holmdel, two concertgoers in their twenties died last night from a combination of booze and drugs, authorities say.
The deaths came amid “mayhem” at the all-day, heavy-metal Ozzfest that also saw 83 people arrested, according to the Star-Ledger.
Raymond Guarino, 26, of Forked River initially passed out about 3:15 p.m. but was resuscitated by paramedics and taken to Bayshore Medical Center, police said. He died there at 11:25 p.m.
Troopers were told Guarino had ingested cocaine, marijuana and alcohol prior to passing out, the State Police said. A search of the vehicle Guarino arrived at the concert in yielded small amounts of cocaine and marijuana. police said.
A second concertgoer, Patrick Norris, 24, of Coram, N.Y. passed out about 10 p.m., the State Police said. Norris was also taken to Bayshore where was pronounced dead. As with Guarino, troopers were told Norris also had injected cocaine, marijuana and alcohol before and during the show.
The New Jersey Turnpike Authority, which owns the 17,500-seat venue, said this morning that alcohol would now be banned from the parking lot.
From the Ledger:
The Turnpike Authority has allowed people of legal drinking age to consume alcohol in the Arts Center parking lots even as police have tried to crack down on underage drinking, spokesman Joe Orlando said.
“These kids just continue to feel the rules do not apply to them,” Orlando said. “We’ve dealt with it all summer. The problem has gotten worse. Now it’s at the point where we can’t just talk about it. We have to do something.”
The alcohol ban will be in effect for the first time tonight during a concert by the rock band Velvet Revolver.
Orlando told the Associated Press that state police have arrested more than 200 people at shows at the center in past 10 days.
“We’ve tried to deal with it by enforcing the law, and people have thumbed their nose at it,” he said. “”So we’re taking the only action we can.”
The “mayhem” is apparently a reference to the arrests of 59 people for underage drinking and 30 for possession of drugs, disorderly conduct, providing alcohol to a minor, distribution of drugs, defiant trespass presenting fictitious ID or lewd behavior.