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Two Deaths Occur at Ozzfest
Drugs and Alcohol Considered Possible Catalysts
WCBS-TV in New York is reporting that New Jersey police are investigating two deaths involving concert-goers who attended Thursday's Ozzfest concert at the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel.
Patrick Norris, 24, of Coram, and 27-year-old Raymond Guarino, of Forked River, were identified as the two victims, whose deaths are believed to be drug and alcohol related, according to WCBS. Paramedics were initially able to resuscitate Guarido after he fell unconscious, but he later died at a local hospital.
Police said both had passed out during the show.
"From what I heard it was a combination of drugs, alcohol, and caffeine ... in the one death. I'm not aware of the second one that happened late last night," Joe Orlando, a spokesman for the New Jersey Turnpike Authority, told WCBS. The Turnpike authority owns the land the venue sits on.
In the spring, dozens of teenagers were rushed to the hospital, in most cases due to alcohol or drug intoxication, after a local concert. New Jersey State Police then began cracking down on underage drinking in the parking lot and now officials say they'll take even more drastic measures.
"Beginning tonight alcohol is going to be banned completely in the parking lot at the Arts Center," Orlando told WCBS. "State police and authority are discussing how they're going to enforce it and what options they have, whether it be just confiscating or telling people give it up or you have to leave."
Officials say last night more than 80 people were arrested for underage drinking and drug possession. More than 200 people have been arrested during shows at the venue over the past 10 days.
"We've tried to deal with it by enforcing the law, and people have thumbed their nose at it," Orlando said. "So we're taking the only action we can."