Security guard is second person to die after crush at Asake O2 Brixton Academy concert

Nigerian Afrobeat star was forced to cancel sold-out show halfway through after crowds of people, many without tickets, attempted to gain access

The crush at the O2 Academy in Brixton, south London, took place at an Asake concert. AFP
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A second person has died from injuries sustained in a crush at a concert at the O2 Brixton Academy in London.

Gaby Hutchinson, 23, had been working as part of the security team at the event where Nigerian Afrobeat star Asake was performing. He died in hospital in the early hours of Monday, the Metropolitan Police said.

Rebecca Ikumelo, 33, died in hospital on Saturday.

The crush is thought to have started when ticketless fans tried to gain entry.

Chief Supt Colin Wingrove of the Metropolitan Police said: “It is devastating news that a second person has lost their life following the events on Thursday. I wish to express my heartfelt condolences to Gaby’s family at this unimaginably difficult time.”

The force said the three people critically injured in the crush were all in the foyer of the building at the time.

A 21-year-old woman remains in a critical condition.

Ms Ikumelo, from Newham, east London, was a mother of two known for her “care, kindness and love”, her family said.

Her family said in a statement: “Rebecca was a graduate of nursing.

“She was an adorable mother of two children who loved working with kids.

“She was well respected in the family for her care, kindness and love.

“Her parents call her Tosin {short for Oluwatosin) meaning ‘Lord is Worthy’.”

Rebecca Ikumelo, 33, who died after a crowd crush at an Asake concert at the O2 Academy Brixton in London. PA

On Saturday, Asake said he was “devastated” and “overwhelmed with grief” by Ms Ikumelo’s death.

In a statement posted on Instagram, he said: “I am devastated by the news that Rebecca Ikumelo who was in a critical condition since Thursday has sadly passed away.

“My sincerest condolences to her loved ones at this time. Let us please keep her family in our prayers. I have spoken to them and will continue to do so.

“I am overwhelmed with grief and could never have imagined anything like this happening.

“My team and I are still awaiting the full debrief back from the venue management and the police to determine what exactly led to all the disruption caused and ultimately to Rebecca’s passing.

“If you have any relevant information relating to this please do reach out to the Metropolitan Police.”

Asake, whose real name is Ahmed Ololade, was recently nominated for BBC Radio 1’s Sound of 2023 award for artists breaking through in the UK.

Before the gig, he had urged fans not to go to the venue without a valid ticket.

The concert was the third of three sold-out dates at the 4,921-standing capacity venue and concluded a run of UK dates.

Updated: December 20, 2022, 7:53 AM