Halloween concert stampede claims a fourth teenage victim

Belén Langdon del Real, 17, died from injuries sustained in crush at Madrid Arena

F. Javier Barroso

A fourth victim has died as a result of Thursday morning’s tragedy at a Halloween concert in Madrid when thousands of party-goers stampeded to try to escape the venue where it was taking place.

Belén Langdon del Real, 17, died on Saturday morning at Madrid’s 12 de Octubre Hospital after succumbing to the injuries she sustained when she was crushed by a mob at the Madrid Arena venue in the Casa de Campo area of the capital.

Her parents, who were in Brazil when the tragedy struck, rushed home to be by her side. After her death, they opted to donate her vital organs. Her body was taken to the Forensic Institute where an autopsy was scheduled for Sunday.

Another young woman, María Teresa Alonso, who was also crushed by the crowds, was still listed in critical condition at a Madrid hospital on Sunday.

Langdon del Real is the fourth victim of Thursday’s Thriller Music Park tragedy. Katie Casielles, Rocio Oña Pineda and Cristina Arce de la Fuente, all 18, were also killed in the rush.

Investigators are still trying to determine what set off the stampede. According to witnesses, a flare was set off inside the venue, which might have created the panic.

Police took a statement from the organizer of the event, Miguel Ángel Flores, a well-known nightclub and special events promoter who runs the company Diviertt SL.

Officers from the police homicide group continue to sift through the videos of the 90 security cameras that were installed around Madrid Arena, where the Thriller Music Park concert was held. Police sources say it will take several days before they can review the 1,350 hours of footage.

Police are trying to determine who threw the flare and whether Madrid Arena was filled beyond its 10,600 capacity. Organizers have maintained they sold 9,650 tickets. But police investigators have seen footage showing hundreds of youngsters gatecrashing the event.

At one point during the concert, electronic-music DJ Steve Aoki announced: “Can you believe that there are 15,000 of us here?”

Police are also looking into allegations that there were not enough security guards at the event.

As with the rest of the victims, the family and friends of Langdon del Real were shocked and saddened by the news of her death. Many found out on Saturday as they were headed to the hospital to offer support and solidarity to her parents.

“She was the best thing in this world. Now all we can do is pray for her,” said one friend.

She was the sixth of seven children. Before her death, on Saturday her brother Borja said in a radio interview that the doctors were not giving the family much hope.

“There is no hope for Belen’s life. The doctors say that her prognosis is getting worse; her system has begun shutting down. We are aware that God will take her at any moment,” he said.

The family lives in Cobeña, a small town of 6,500 residents about 34 kilometers north of Madrid. They plan on burying her at the San Isidro cemetery on Monday.

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