New Electric Daisy Filing

The parents of a teen concertgoer who died after attending the Electric Daisy Carnival last year have filed a wrongful death suit against the commission that oversees the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and promoter Insomniac Events.

Grace Rodriguez and Leonard Contreras filed suit Sept. 8 on behalf of 15-year-old Sasha Rodriguez, whom they claim was admitted to the 16-and-over event without showing proof of ID and was unaccompanied by a guardian.

After entering EDC, Sasha ingested the drug MDMA (or Ecstasy), the suit says, and “began demonstrating common signs of an MDMA overdose.”

Even worse, “over-crowded and under-staffed conditions at the EDC delayed response of on-site security and emergency medical services providers to her by approximately 20 minutes,” the parents allege.

When workers reached the girl, they were “inadequately trained and equipped” and “unable to provide the necessary emergency medical care and treatment” she needed on the spot.

By the time Sasha arrived at a hospital, she was “non-verbal with saliva bubbling at the corners of her mouth,” suffered a seizure, experienced acute respiratory failure and slipped into a coma.

Todd DeStefano, a former Coliseum events manager who moonlighted as a consultant for Insomniac and earned $1.7 million in side deals from companies that did business with the commission, is also named in the suit, which maintains the defendants were negligent in hosting, promoting and presenting the event.

The commission, Insomniac and DeStefano “should have known that the EDC would attract, promote, encourage, facilitate widespread illegal and illicit activity … which endangered the health, safety and well-being of all persons attending” the event, the suit says.

In addition, Insomniac and DeStefano in particular should have known events such as EDC “encouraged, promoted and facilitated the possession, distribution and consumption of illegal drugs” and that the number of “police officers and other security personnel at the EDC was inadequate to maintain order and deter illegal drug possession, distribution and/or consumption” among the crowd of 185,000 in attendance.

The suit also raises a number of claims including negligent infliction of emotional distress, dangerous condition of public property, premises liability, intentional misrepresentation, negligent misrepresentation, public nuisance, civil conspiracy, aiding and abetting and negligent supervision.

The parents are seeking general damages and costs in addition to punitive or exemplary damages from Insomniac and DeStefano in order to dissuade them “from future reckless and illegal conduct.”

An attorney for Insomniac responded in a statement claiming the suit is “without merit.”

“Insomniac takes every reasonable precaution to ensure that our fans enjoy our events in a safe and secure environment,” the statement says. “This includes working with public safety officials, law enforcement and thorough pat down searches at the point of entry. However, Insomniac cannot control the actions of the individuals who choose to break the law and purchase and ingest illegal substances at or prior to our events.”