• August 30, 2014

Police: Tyler, The Creator, incited riot at SXSW

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Posted: Sunday, March 16, 2014 4:30 am

AUSTIN — Rapper Tyler, The Creator, was arrested Saturday for allegedly inciting a riot during a show at the South By Southwest music festival.

Travis County Sheriff’s spokesman Roger Wade said the Odd Future rapper, whose name is Tyler Gregory Okonma, was arrested at Austin-Bergstrom Airport and was likely to be arraigned later Saturday. If convicted of inciting a riot, which is a misdemeanor, he faces up to a year in jail and a $4,000 fine.

His bond was set at $3,500.

The rapper’s publicist declined to comment about the arrest.

Police said the 23-year-old Los Angeles resident incited a large crowd of fans at the annual music conference and festival to push their way past venue employees controlling access to a Thursday show that was already at full capacity.

Officers who were at the scene said in a warrant that Tyler yelled for fans to push their way inside twice, and that a bartender had to protect a woman from injury in the resulting push. Police released a video from the concert that shows scores of fans bursting through a gate at the Scoot Inn in downtown Austin.

Tyler and members of the Odd Future collective were denied a visa to travel to New Zealand in February after officials there said they were a potential “public threat” because of past troubles, “including incidents at past performances in which they have incited violence.”

They pointed to a 2011 incident in which police were called to a comic book store in Boston where fans became unruly.

The group’s manager, Christian Clancy, defended them last month after the New Zealand decision, saying they were young at the time and were being judged too harshly.

© 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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