Death and 200 Arrests at Widespread Panic Concerts. 

04-30-02 antiGUY

Widespread Panic�s concert appearances in Pelham, Ala this past weekend will not soon before forgotten by area locals. One fan died from an Ecstasy overdose and over 200 other concertgoers were arrested on drug and alcohol related charges. 

At approximately 10 P.M. during Widespread Panic�s concert Saturday night, Erica Robins Young collapsed while watching the show. She died an hour later and the cause of death appears to have been from an overdose of Ecstasy.  

The band issued a statement today concerning Young�s death. �The band, management, and crew members of Widespread Panic send their deepest condolences to the family and friends of the young lady," says the band in their statement. "Throughout the 15 years the band has been performing, this is the first time we have encountered this type of incident."

The concerts also led to approximately 200 arrests by agents of the state alcoholic beverage control board and Pelham police officials. In the undercover crackdown dubbed �Operation Don�t Panic� local police arrested approximately 200 fans that were attending the concerts at Pelham's Oak Mountain Amphitheatre this past weekend. Reportedly half of the arrests were related to felony drug laws and the remaining arrests stemmed from underage drinking and misdemeanor drug charges. 

The band also addressed �Operation Don�t Panic� in their statement, "With full cooperation of concert promoters and local authorities, Widespread Panic makes every possible effort to ensure a safe environment for everyone attending a show," reads the statement. "Furthermore, we fully support the actions taken by local police to eliminate drug dealing and underage drinking at all Widespread Panic concerts."

"Thousands of fans attend Widespread Panic shows equipped with only an appreciation for the music, and respect for their fellow concert goers; this is the responsible type of behavior learned first in the home, and then carried into public, social situations.� Said Widespread Panic concerning the arrests at their concerts over the weekend. �This is the environment in which Widespread Panic strives to play a positive role, and will continue to do so."