Vancouver police say 15 youth from across B.C. have been charged with mischief, one year after a last-minute show cancellation at Vancouver’s Breakout Festival angered some attendees into destroying the venue.
Around 5,200 people were at the PNE Amphitheatre grounds on Sept. 18, 2022 when the headlining act, rapper Lil Baby, said he was no longer going on stage. Organizers said at the time that most attendees left at that point, but around 1,000 stayed and took their disappointment out on the venue and each other.
Videos shared on social media that night showed concert-goers tearing down tents, throwing waste bins and refrigerators, breaking into fights with each other and climbing lamp posts. In total, the Vancouver Police Department said people caused more than $300,000 in damage to the PNE grounds and surrounding neighbourhood.
In the year since, police used video taken that night and surveillance footage to identify a long list of suspects. On Tuesday (Sept. 19), the department announced mischief charges had been approved against 15 of those people – all men aged 15 to 22 at the time of the offences. All but three of them live outside of Vancouver, including in Prince George, Vancouver Island and the Okanagan.