Festival goers received a gruesome surprise March 13 when a drunk driver plowed through a crowded street killing two people and injuring up to 23 others at Austin’s annual South By Southwest Music Festival.
Among the injured is The University of Southern Mississippi alumna Sandy Le. Sources say that Le suffered injuries to her brain and that she is currently in a coma though recent MRI reports show some improvement in her condition.
According to CNN, the 21- year-old suspect was pursued by police when they saw him driving in the wrong direction on a one-way road. Instead of pulling over, the driver accelerated into a busy street hitting cars and pedestrians.
Witness Russ Barone described the horrific scene to CNN reporters. “It looked like something out of a movie,” Barone said. “A few people lying on the street with their friends around them trying to get them up, trying to get them back to life. Hopefully, they are.”
The suspect was captured in a foot chase by an officer who brought him down with a taser. He will be charged with two counts of capital murder and 23 counts of aggravated assault by vehicle, according to police.
Those wishing to help aid the victims and their families can donate to the SXSW Cares Fund with the Austin Community Foundation at www.austincommunityfoundation.org.
According to the website, the funds will be disbursed to those most affected through a community-based process to be created by representatives of SXSW, the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau and the City of Austin with the Austin Community Foundation.
The Student Printz will continue to monitor Le’s condition in the coming weeks.