U2 cancel St. Louis concert due to ongoing protests over Jason Stockley acquittal

Police told concert organizers that they couldn't provide a typical level of security

U2, photo by David Brendan Hall

Photo by David Brendan Hall

In the wake of the acquittal of former St. Louis police officer Jason Stockley in the killing of Anthony Lamar Smith, hundreds of protesters took to the downtown streets of the Missouri city on Friday night. As the demonstrations continued on Saturday, police continued to divert their forces to the area. As a result, U2 has canceled their planned concert on Saturday night.

“We have been informed by the St. Louis Police Department that they are not in a position to provide the standard protection for our audience as would be expected for an event of this size,” the band said in a statement. “We have also been informed that local crowd security personnel would not be at full capacity.”

“In light of this information, we cannot in good conscience risk our fans’ safety by proceeding with tonight’s concert. As much as we regret having to cancel, we feel it is the only acceptable course of action in the current environment.”

(Read: U2’s American Dream: The Joshua Tree 30 Years Later)

In a separate statement, frontman Bono added, “Deeply saddened at what has happened in St. Louis and having to cancel our show tonight…. I found myself reading Dr. King’s speech from the National Cathedral and asking myself is this 1968 or 2017?”

He went on to share a quote from Dr. King that reads, “Human progress never rolls in on the wheels of inevitability… we are coming to ask America to be true to the huge promissory note that it signed years ago. And we are coming to engage in dramatic nonviolent action, to call attention to the gulf between promise and fulfillment; to make the invisible visible.”

Fans who purchased online tickets will automatically receive a refund on the credit cards used to make the purchases. Refunds for non-internet purchases will be available starting Monday at 10 a.m. at the point of purchase.

U2 has been touring in celebration of the 30th anniversary of The Joshua Tree ahead of the December release of their new album, Songs of Experience. Find the full slate of remaining dates below.

U2 2017 Tour Dates:
09/19 – Phoenix, AZ @ University of Phoenix Stadium *
09/22 – San Diego, CA @ Qualcomm Stadium *
10/03 – Mexico City, MX @ Foro Sol #
10/04 – Mexico City, MX @ Foro Sol #
10/07 – Bogota, CO @ Estadio El Campin #
10/10 – Buenos Aires, AR @ La Plata #
10/11 – Buenos Aires, AR @ La Plata #
10/14 – Santiago, CL @ Estadio Nacional #
10/19 – Sao Paulo, BR @ Morumbi Stadium #
10/21 – Sao Paulo, BR @ Morumbi Stadium #
10/22 – Sao Paulo, BR @ Morumbi Stadium #
10/25 – Sao Paulo, BR @ Morumbi Stadium #

* = w/ Beck
# = w/ Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds


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