Updates: Drunk Driving Tragedy Kills Two, Injures Twenty-Three

Despite the tragedy that killed two and injured 23 others last night, SXSW continues.


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In a mid-morning press conference, Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo says a drunk driver ran through a traffic stop, fled down a closed street full of people, then collided with a moped and a bicycle, killing two people and injuring 23 others.

“When somebody acts intentionally, it’s very difficult to stop. So if you have a car here, you go around a car. You have a police officer in uniform that was forced to jump out of the way. There’s a method to why we do things the way we do and it’s worked for many, many years, and I don’t foresee any huge changes in the way that we set up our closures,” says Acevedo.  

Two people have serious, life-threatening head injuries and three others are in serious condition.

SXSW managing director Roland Swenson says staffers and volunteers reported for their regular duties this morning.

Swenson says, “As much as we would just like to go home and spend time absorbing the shock of this horrific event, but I think that we all feel some obligation to all the people that have traveled here from all around the world to be part of this event to keep moving forward.”

Twenty-one year-old Rashad Charjuan Owens is booked at Travis County Jail, charged with two counts of capital murder by terroristic threat.

For updates on this story, visit KUT Austin.

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