BBC 1Xtra show where rapper Krept was stabbed had ‘high risk’ flag

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Caption: Exc: BBC judged event 'high risk' before rap star Krept slashed

The BBC found ‘shortcomings’ in security at a 1Xtra event where rapper Krept was slashed in the leg, according to a newly-released document (Picture: BBC/file image)

A BBC 1Xtra gig where rap star Krept was stabbed as violence flared went ahead despite ‘shortcomings’ being identified in security arrangements, an internal report shows.

Security staff at Arena Birmingham experienced ‘unprecedented’ levels of hostility as violence broke out in the crowd and backstage, according to an investigation into the trouble.

The BBC had refused to disclose the document in response to a request under the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act but has released a heavily redacted version after Metro.co.uk launched a challenge through the information watchdog.

Krept, who co-presents BBC talent contest The Rap Game UK, needed stitches after being slashed in the leg backstage at Arena Birmingham.

The grime artist, real name Casyo Johnson, later said the attack, blamed on a notorious Birmingham gang, could have been fatal if the knife had been ‘a millimetre deeper’.

Aitch, French Montana and AJ Tracey were among the other performers on the bill at the Radio 1Xtra event, which attracted around 9,000 fans on October 5, 2019.

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BBC staff also suffered ‘high levels of emotional stress and anxiety as a result of what they witnessed’, according to the censored report.

Arena Birmingham said today that safety and security is a ‘top priority’ and it strongly rejects any claims to the contrary.

In a rare disclosure by the Corporation under FOI, the document, headed ‘Initial Security Review, Lessons Learned & Recommendations’, reveals managers’ initial fears over the event.

The report states: ‘Director of SSR [Safety, Security and Resilience] initially rated the event as HIGH RISK but the extra security measure put in place, additional security guards and police, reduced that risk to MEDIUM.

‘Prior to the start time of 7:45 pm, BBC Corporate Security had identified several shortcomings in the venue’s security solution, whilst minor, if left they could have compromised the integrity of the security plan for the live event. The venue security manager was receptive to those observations and made the required improvements.’

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 13/10/2020 - Programme Name: Rap Game - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: Krept - (C) Naked TV - Photographer: Vicky Grout

Grime artist Krept has said he was one millimeter from death after being slashed backstage at a BBC 1Xtra gig (Picture: Vicky Grout/ BBC/NAKED)

However, the additional security precautions failed to stop the atmosphere turning sour, with a mobile phone video showing a fight breaking out among the crowd before the event was closed early.

The document reads: ‘The BBC Incident Management Team stopped the show 49 minutes before the planned end as they had lost confidence in the arena’s security teams ability to maintain a safe and secure environment.

‘No BBC colleagues were injured during the events that night; however, some have reported high levels of emotional stress and anxiety as a result of what they witnessed.’

Krept, one half of duo Krept & Konan, was reportedly slashed and robbed in a VIP area by members of Birmingham-based gang the Johnson Crew.

At the time, questions were asked as to how the assailant could have got the blade into the venue through security scanners and bag searches.

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The TV presenter required ‘several stitches’ to a ‘slash wound to his leg’ from an on-site paramedic but did not need to go to hospital, according to the newly-disclosed report.

At 10.01pm, a ‘show stop’ decision was made by the BBC after it ‘lost confidence in the venue’s ability to provide a safe environment for the rest of the evening’.

The Arena is said to have reported ‘that their guards have stated that the level of hostility that they were subjected to by some member of the audience was unprecedented’.

The ‘lessons learned’ and recommendations in the aftermath are heavily redacted, but the BBC found it should have deployed its own extra security guards to check that ‘venue security measures were being delivered’.

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 08:00:01 on 07/10/2020 - Programme Name: Rap Game - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. 1) - Picture Shows: Judges L-R Krept & Konan, DJ Target - (C) Naked TV - Photographer: Vicky Grout

Krept (l) alongside his co-stars Konan and DJ Target in a promotional image for BBC Three talent show The Rap Game UK (Picture: Vicky Grout/BBC/NAKED)

Troubleshooters also found that ‘decision making, at all levels, needs to be recorded’ and made reference to ‘background checks on press, guest and influencers’ at future events.

Krept, 31, later told the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show that ‘I got a report back saying if [the blade] was a millimetre deeper, it could have been fatal’.

However, he also expressed his determination to press on with his career.

The report was only disclosed by the BBC after Metro.co.uk challenged the broadcaster’s initial refusal, which was made under a section of the Act granting exemptions for law enforcement reasons.

One of the justifications for secrecy was a mistaken reference to a request for a police crime reference number, which had not been made.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) ruled that: ‘The Commissioner does not consider that all of the information contained within the report is captured by the exemption and she is concerned that section 31 has been applied in a blanket fashion.’

The heavily-redacted BBC report compiled after violence broke out and rap star Krept was stabbed at a 1Xtra gig in Birmingham (Picture: BBC)

The heavily-redacted BBC report compiled after violence broke out and rap star Krept was stabbed at a 1Xtra gig in Birmingham (Picture: BBC)

The Commissioner then provided a confidential annex solely to the BBC showing the information which should be made public.

The ICO found: ‘The Commissioner’s decision is that section 31 does not apply to all the information which the BBC is withholding.’

The stabbing is one of a series of unsolved attacks on UK rap stars previously reported on by Metro.co.uk.

The BBC said at the time: ‘Following an isolated serious incident, we have had to stop 1Xtra Live in Birmingham. We are co-operating fully with the police to establish what has happened.

‘We’re sorry to everyone who attended 1Xtra Live in Birmingham for the early finish, however the health and safety of everyone involved is always our top priority.

‘We are upset and saddened that something like this should happen to a guest at one of our events and we remain in close contact and continue to offer our full support.’

The BBC said today it had nothing further to add.

A spokesperson for Arena Birmingham said: ‘The security and safety of all who visit the venue is always our top priority and we have extremely robust security measures in place.

‘We strongly refute any claims that suggest otherwise.

‘West Midlands Police investigated the incident that took place on 5th October 2019 and concluded that they were satisfied with our handling of the incident and the additional proactive steps we have taken since.

‘No further comment will be provided regarding the incident.

‘Working together with local and national authorities, our venue has a multi-layered approach to security to protect visitors and staff. We have invested heavily in our security infrastructure to ensure that we provide a safe and secure environment.’

A spokesperson for West Midlands Police said: ‘We received a number of calls from the public to support our enquiries but the injured party did not want to make a formal complaint.

‘We’ve been unable to identify who was responsible but officers will assess any fresh information we receive.’

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