Canada Student Found Dead at Pemberton Music Festival, ‘Foul Play’ Suspected

By @snksounak on
American country music star Parton performs on the Pyramid Stage at Worthy Farm in Somerset, during the Glastonbury Festival
American country music star Dolly Parton performs on the Pyramid Stage at Worthy Farm in Somerset, during the Glastonbury Festival June 29, 2014. REUTERS/Cathal McNaughton

A 21-year-old engineering student from Canada was found dead at the Pemberton Music Festival. The festival was held from July 16 to 20 in British Columbia.

The festival authorities earlier issued an official statement about the death which took place on Friday, July 18. The name of the deceased person has been confirmed to be Nick Phongsavath from Regina, Saskatchewan. The statement said that the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team and the RCMP had confirmed the identification.

Nick was found on Friday around 6 o'clock in the evening inside one of the tents used as portable toilets. Even though RCMP as well as the BC Ambulance Service tried to revive him, all the attempts failed as he was pronounced dead immediately. According to the statement, there could be a "foul play" involved in Nick's death. The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team is currently leading the investigation of the "suspicious death."

The festival authorities said that they were "doing everything possible to assist with" the investigation. They also said that the RCMP was confident that the festival was safe for people as they called the death as an "isolated incident." The festival authorities were encouraged to continue with the schedules.

Nick was found to be unresponsive inside the tent which was at the north of the festival campus. According to IHIT Sergeant Jennifer Pound, there was no evidence yet to rule out any sort of foul play involved in the death. "IHIT is working closely with the Sea-to-Sky detachment and have been interviewing witnesses and speaking with event attendees throughout the night," she said, "At this point, there is nothing to confirm or definitively rule out foul play." The autopsy, which will confirm the death, has not been done yet.

Festival authorities emphasised that their "primary concern" was the safety of the people who attended the music festival. They thanked Pemberton Fire Rescue and SLRD Emergency Management the support in taking care of the attendees. Additionally, they also provided shelter, clothing, food and water to 55 campers who had to be displaced after the incident.

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