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Santa Monica police bring Flux Pavilion concert to abrupt halt

By Todd Martens

This post has been updated.

10:39 AM PST, November 14, 2012

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A free concert by electronic DJ-producer Flux Pavilion was shut down Tuesday evening by Santa Monica police in riot gear after hundreds more people showed up than the event's permit allowed, officials said. The concert, part of a series sponsored by MTV's globally focused upstart brand MTV Iggy, was cut short after police estimated that 2,500 to 3,000 fans arrived for the 1,500-capacity event, according to our sister blog L.A. Now. 

The concert was to run from 8 p.m. to midnight at Hangar 8 within the Santa Monica Airport. Hangar 8, which is regularly used for private events and music video shoots, has a maximum capacity of 1,500 people. Santa Monica police told L.A. Now that up to 3,000 fans with what appeared to be free tickets arrived at the venue site. 

It was unknown how many tickets for the event were dispersed to fans. 

[Updated at 11:15 a.m., Nov. 14: MTV passed along the following statement: "Turnout for the concert far exceeded the 1,000 capacity for the venue. Prior to turning fans away, officers of the Santa Monica Police Department called in backup to help manage the crowd. At approximately 11 p.m., organizers considered it best to end the event earlier than scheduled. Fans filed out in an orderly fashion and no one was hurt. MTV Iggy thanks the fans who showed up for the performance and regrets any inconvenience caused by its early end."]

L.A. Now reports that the concert was shut down about 9:30 p.m. with only about 400 people inside the venue. As many as 2,000 were estimated to be waiting outside. 

Flux Pavilion, whose real name is Joshua Steele, has posted on Twitter that no one was hurt at the event and said this morning that rumors that pepper spray was used were false. He said he was able to play for about 45 minutes, and wrote that the police response to the overcrowding was "backwards." 

im so glad to hear nobody got hurt last night, pepper spray was just a rumour.

— Flux Pavilion (@Fluxpavilion) November 14, 2012

"It was a permitted event, but it wasn't permitted for that many people," Santa Monica Police Sgt. Richard Lewis told L.A. Now. "We had to shut it down because there was no way we could control that size of a crowd."

MTV Iggy has not updated its Twitter feed since before the concert began. Fans are encouraged to win tickets to the free concerts by tweeting at the brand. Tickets to the 18 and older concert were given away Nov. 10 at Amoeba Music in Hollywood. 

This was the fourth and final concert this year as part of MTV Iggy's live "music experiment shows." Others were held in New York, Chapel Hill, N.C., and Portland, Ore., and featured the likes of Santigold and Of Monsters and Men. 

MTV Iggy films the concerts. The theme for Tuesday night's show was Gothic neon. L.A. Now reports that two arrests were made at the event, both for public intoxication. 

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