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Posted: 8/26/2004 5:53:35 AM EDT
Lawsuit against Dave Matthews Band
Bus driver accused of unloading waste

An architecture boat tour on the Chicago River got bombarded with human waste as it traveled under the Kinzie Street Bridge.

Aug. 24, 2004 (CHICAGO) — The Chicago Police Department has released a surveillance photo that police said proves a tour bus for the Dave Matthews Band dumped human waste on a boat full of people on the Chicago River earlier this month. On Tuesday, the State of Illinois filed a civil lawsuit against the band and the bus driver.

As much as 100 gallons of waste splashed down on more than 100 tour boat passengers as the boat passed under the Kinzie Street Bridge earlier this month.

This is the surveillance photo that police said proves a tour bus for the Dave Matthews Band dumped human waste on a boat full of people on the Chicago River.

For years Dave Matthews has been known as a supporter of the environment. He's won awards from environmental groups. His band has their own Ben and Jerry's ice cream flavor and portions of those proceeds go to support environmental causes. So today's revelation by Chicago police, which places a Dave Matthews Band tour bus on the bridge at the exact time the incident occurred, certainly could be construed as environmentally unfriendly.

The Dave Matthews Band has made a name for its tireless touring and unwavering support for the environment. But today, Chicago police released a photo from a surveillance camera showing a bus leased by the band crossing the bridge at 1:18 and 14 seconds in the afternoon August 8th, nearly the exact time the incident occurred. Police have no doubt that's the bus.

"For 15 minutes prior to the time and 15 minutes after the time, no other bus crossed that bridge," said Det. Michael Chasen, Chicago Police Dept. "Certainly, this is the bus that discharged this fluid."

While police admit the initial report of a license plate of the offending bus was erroneous, the plate taken from that bus led them to nine other buses all owned by a Tennessee tour company, which leased them to the Dave Matthews Band. Five of the buses were in Chicago at the time.

This new police revelation comes a day after Attorney General Lisa Madigan filed a civil suit against the group and the driver.

"They didn't have a permit. They are not allowed to simply dump raw sewage into the river. Aside from being disgusting, it's illegal," said Attorney General Madigan.

As for the band, spokesman John Vlautin said "We reserve judgment on anyone until we have seen the evidence. We're fairly certain we are not involved in this."

So what about potential damage to the groups impeccable fan and environment friendly reputation?

"I'm sure this is a huge embarrassment for them but I also think their fans have enough good will of going to concerts and not being treated like cattle, like so many other bands treat their fans, that they're not going to hold this against Dave Matthews," said Jim DeRogatis, Sun-Times Rock Critic.

As for criminal charges, the police are waiting for guidance from the Cook County State's Attorney's Office, which has yet to file anything, and may not for some time.

Link Posted: 8/26/2004 5:54:56 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/26/2004 6:12:48 AM EDT
See, I allways told everybody all this guy did was spew shit.
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