Suspect in Pinkpop fatal crash turned self in to Amsterdam police

Dutch police sign (Photo: M.Minderhoud/ Wikipedia).

A 34-year-old man from Heerlen turned himself in to the police in Amsterdam in connection with a near the Pinkpop festival in Landgraaf on Monday morning, the authorities announced in a press conference at noon. Whether this was an accident or a deliberate attack, is still under investigation.

A 35-year-old man from Heerlen was killed. Heerlen is about 5 kilometers away from Landgraaf. A 30-year-old man from Landgraaf, a 26-year-old man from Heerlen and a 23-year-old woman from Heerlen were injured. They are all still in critical condition in hospital. 

RTL Nieuws identifies the man who was killed as Gilles Boux de Casson. He worked as a volunteer at various pop stages. "Everyone is devastated", Johan de Niet, director of Poppodium Nieuwe Nor in Heerlen where Gilles Boux de Casson worked, said to the broadcaster. "He was a huge music lover. And a very nice employee. Always cheerful."

According to De Niet, Boux de Casson worked for them for years, as well as for Bureau Pinkpop. He was done with work when he and three others were hit by a van. "They were just chatting, I understand, and then the van came." As far as De Niet can say, the three injured people were not Pinkpop volunteers. 

The white van involved in the incident, an Opel Combi and not a Fiat Doblo as was previously reported, was found and confiscated for investigation. The suspect is in restricted custody in Amsterdam and will soon be transferred to the Limburg police, according to 1Limburg. Why the man traveled to Amsterdam - a drive of nearly 3 hours from Landgraaf - before , is not clear. The man is suspected of manslaughter and attempted manslaughter. He called the police from Amsterdam and told them where to find the van. 

At this stage nothing can be said about the suspect's motive, Daniele Weymar of the Public Prosecutor said during the press conference. The investigation is ongoing. The police are talking to witnesses and doing forensic investigation on the van. An investigation is also being done where the van was found. Where exactly that is, was not revealed. The authorities are looking into multiple scenarios, the prosecutor said. 

"This is the first time that Pinkpop has a death to mourn", Pinkpop director Jan Smeets said at the press conference. "If you have three days of celebration behind you, this is not pleasant. Luckily we were there quickly to provide first aid."

According to Smeets, some 45 thousand people camped on the Pinkpop grounds for the festival. "More people than ever came to the festival by car", he said. "Normally the road is closed on arrival and departure. The road was opened at 4:00 a.m. because there were no more obstacles on the road. But there were still people partying along the road."

The incident was first reported to the emergency services at around 4:06 a.m. - mere minutes after the road was reopened. 

 

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