Sony Music Holdings have been ordered to $160million (£132.8million) in damages following the deaths of two people at a Cousin Stizz concert in Atlanta.
The incident took place in November 2017 at The Masquerade Venue after a man allegedly opened fire on the crowd, reports HotNewHipHop.
Jonathan Bautista was later arrested and charged with two counts of murder after two people – Giovan Diaz and Ewell Ynoa – died from injuries sustained that night.
Following a hearing on December 15 this year, a judge found Sony Music to be partially at fault for failing to protect concert-goers. The amount awarded also included two other consolidated cases suing Sony on similar grounds.
Cousin Stizz in 2017
The lawsuit was filed by the Beasley Allen Law Firm in June 2018. Sony, RCA Records, Live Nation and Masquerade were all named as defendants. In a statement, Beasley Allen explained how the verdict was reached.
“Obviously, these types of cases do not come around often. This was a mass shooting in a crowded concert,” the firm said. “There were multiple deaths, and Gio and Wells suffered significantly before losing their fight for life, as eyewitnesses outlined. The trial was incredibly emotional because of what these families, and the world, lost.”
Allen continued: “One of these men had been told he would be a father just a few hours before the shooting happened. Combine that with the fact the concert endangered everyone, and this defendant refused to participate in the legal process, and you get the type of verdict we saw here.”
The funds are to be used to compensate the victims’ families. Sony has yet to comment on the verdict
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