Skip to main content

LATEST UPDATES: Tracking COVID-19 | Transfer Of Power | Racial Justice

13 Killed In Stampede At Peru Nightclub Operating Against Health Orders

At least 13 people were killed in a stampede at a nightclub in Peru when they tried to escape police who showed up to enforce COVID-19 restrictions on such gatherings.

According to Peru's interior ministry, 120 people attended a party at Thomas Restobar Club in Lima's Los Olivos district on Saturday night, despite prohibitions on social gatherings under the country's state of emergency.

Nightclubs and bars were ordered closed in March, and extended family gatherings were banned earlier this month in an effort to slow the spread of the virus.

After being alerted by neighbors around 9 p.m., according to the ministry, police arrived to evacuate the building. Party-goers tried to flee through a single exit, getting trampled and trapped in the staircase as a result.

Six other people, including three police officers, were injured. Twenty three people were detained.

"The Minister of the Interior deeply regrets the death of thirteen people as a result of the criminal irresponsibility of an unscrupulous businessman; and extends his deepest condolences to his family members," reads the statement from the office of Jorge Montoya.

The ministry said that police did not use any weapons or tear gas on the scene, though the BBC reports one resident told RPP radio that the police threw tear gas canisters during the raid.

In a second statement, the interior ministry said again that police had not used firearms or tear gas at any point during the intervention, and had followed lawful, established protocols.

It also said the nightclub's two owners, a married couple, were detained on Sunday.

Later that day, health officials said that 15 detainees had tested positive for the coronavirus, with 13 of those still actively contagious.

According to data from Johns Hopkins University, more than 585,000 people in Peru have tested positive for COVID-19 and more than 27,450 have died. The country ranks sixth in the world for its total number of cases.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

FEATURED PODCAST

San Diego News Now podcast branding

San Diego news; when you want it, where you want it. Get local stories on politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings. Hosted by Anica Colbert and produced by KPBS, San Diego and the Imperial County's NPR and PBS station.

  • Need help keeping up with the news that matters most? Get the day's top news — ranging from local to international — straight to your inbox each weekday morning.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Curious San Diego banner

Want more KPBS news?
Find us on Twitter and Facebook, or sign up for our newsletters.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.