Robot at YOUtopia
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Details surrounding a recent death at the La Jolla Indian Reservation are limited.

An estimated 3000 people camped at the reservation over the October 15-18 weekend for YOUtopia, “San Diego's Regional Burning Man Event.”

A member on the board of the San Diego Collaborative Arts Project (SDCAP), which is the nonprofit arts organization that oversees the event, stated: “The entire YOUtopia team and the board of the San Diego Collaborative Arts Project (SDCAP) was saddened by the event on Friday night where we lost a member of our community. Our hearts go out to the man’s family and friends, as well as to the first responders and camp members affected.

“At this time, we are choosing to respect the privacy of the family and friends and will not be commenting on the details of the event. If you are experiencing grief, we ask you to please reach out to those around you and let them know if you need help in any way. We thank everyone for continuing to show respect to this man’s memory and the experience of those affected by this.”

According to Sgt. Jeff Lauhon from the San Diego Sheriff’s Department in Pauma Valley, “On October 17 at 1:24 AM deputies were dispatched to La Jolla Campground where the Youtopia Burning Man event was being held and they were dispatched to a person on the dance area when they arrived.”

Officers located a 43-year-old white male unresponsive on the dance floor.

“Prior to the deputies' arrival some CPR had been performed by bystanders that were qualified to do so, and apparently he was pronounced dead shortly thereafter. Witnesses said he was attending the event, was dancing and [then] fell and died on the floor,” Sgt. Lauhon informed.

The 12th annual San Diego–hosted post–Burning Man event had a theme titled "Robots & Dinosaurs YOUNITE!." Organizers, an all-volunteer team, say it was the best YOUtopia yet.

“The community is really maturing and creating amazing contributions to the event,” said Cable King (a pseudonym). “We gave nearly $60,000 in art grants to the community that was easily matched by individual artists contributions.”

A lady in the front office of the medical examiner’s office said toxicology reports on the victim are pending.

Burning Man organizers have garnered a reputation for keeping deaths at Burning Man–associated events under wraps. Deaths range from the banal, such as car accidents and medical conditions, to the grotesque, such as hanging.

One of Burning Man’s many mottos is “Keep Burning Man potentially fatal.”

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AlexClarke Oct. 23, 2015 @ 6:10 a.m.

If not a medical condition then drugs would be number one on the hit parade. All large events have people using drugs. Sometimes a person will have an undiagnosed medical condition but that is rare.


CaptainObvious Oct. 23, 2015 @ 9:51 a.m.

All large events? Surely you jest. How about the Christian's Harvest thing, or the Democratic National Convention? Excepting Pelosi, of course. That one takes way to many pills.


Lalalogic314 Oct. 29, 2015 @ 1:24 a.m.

Hilarious, jesus turned water to wine by providing moldy bread, shamans use botany for vision quests, Haitians use dentura ane angel trumpets, the rich get high on the poor and hell even monkeys in Panama get drunk and fall from trees. Maybe you should rethink what you are stating; with all due respect. Historically speaking, our ancient heritage has always dappled into psychedelics. The native call them powwows. Its the short cut to home. If we were raised in tibet then meditation would be the norm. However we are raised in glamcountry...mtv, fox and visa. Thank gaia for transcending retreats like these rare gems. Its not a rave nor downtown sd.

Real talk, youtopia is hands down the most artistic, empowering, and unifying event ive ever been to . 2015 was my 5th return to epic bliss. I am 30 something, musically well rounded, bust my butt at a night job while working on degrees. 10 year active college student with a 3.8. Soon I'll be part of the team rewriting history books, or at least my research will.

The poor man had preexisting heart complications, rest his soul. Could have happened at disneyland. Its was very sad, but no ones fault. Dont blame an event for individual's instant. The next time you repent at your sacred church, ask your god for patience and serintity from judgment. Until you experience someones life and death: dont assume, judge or play into the falacies. Logic and reason. Ps* people wrote the books, id never get my spiritually from a book comes from within and without u. PlUR


shirleyberan Oct. 23, 2015 @ 10:41 a.m.

Tired of events that encourage drug use and hide the underlying fact. Spirituality is discovered internally, individually. Read some books.


amorpheous Oct. 23, 2015 @ 4:24 p.m.

To respond to the comment about people partying on after the man's death, most people at Youtopia didn't even know this happened until long after it happened. And as to the cause, it's likely that there was a pre-existing medical condition or poor health to blame. It's exceedingly rare that drugs alone cause deaths while dancing, although they can be a factor. It's very sad this man died, but deaths happen all the time and everywhere. When someone dies at a baseball game or street fair, you never see an announcement made and the event shut down.


shirleyberan Oct. 25, 2015 @ 4:39 p.m.

So right on Paul Regis. A good buzz does not translate to a good death. Creepy.


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