Jackson Roddy, 18-Year-Old USC Student Who Attended Rave-Like 'Hard' Party, Critical After Six-Story Fall

Girls and guys at Hard.
Girls and guys at Hard.
Timothy Norris

Updated after the jump with reaction from the promoter. First posted at 12:22 p.m. See our slideshow of Hard Haunted Mansion here.

You try to throw a good party, but there's always someone who goes a little too far. In this case, a USC student apparently took a six-floor dive from an eight-floor residential building on campus earlier this week after he attended the two-day Hard Haunted Mansion at the nearby Shrine Auditorium over the weekend.

The Los Angeles Times reported that Jackson Roddy, 18, had taken ecstasy, so you know where this story is going:

That's right, raves and drugs.

The crowd at Hard.
The crowd at Hard.
Timoth Norris

Except that, to be fair, Hard is really almost a post-rave -- a punkier version of the all-night dance party set in a concert-like atmosphere.

Headliners included Underworld, Kanye West's DJ, A-Trak, and British pop-dance crooner Calvin Harris.

Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey told us that paramedics got the call of a student down at 650 w. 35th St. at 6:03 a.m. Monday.

USC assistant vice president James Grant told the Weekly it happened at Birnkrant Residential College, a sort-of dorm, on nearby West 28th Street.

The kid was taken to California Hospital Medical Center in critical condition, Humphrey said.

Now, why does one dive from the sixth floor of one's building at 6 a.m. on a Monday morning? We don't know. Grant said there was "no suspicion of foul play."

And why is this news?

Well, suddenly the world woke up and discovered raves again after a 15-year-old died of an ecstasy overdose in June. She had attended June's Electric Daisy Carnival at the nearby Coliseum.

As these things often unfold in the slow summer news season, local politicians went apeshit over the concept of young girls going out all night and partying (a first in American history), and the Coliseum Commission put a hold on raves at its publicly run venues.

Another kid almost losing his life over a party certainly can't help the cause. But these things happen, and have been for 20 years.

By the way, a vigil was held on campus for Roddy Tuesday night.

Update: Hard promoter Gary Richards, one of L.A.'s first rave organizers, sent us this statement:

"We sincerely extend our best wishes to the student and his family. With that said there is no correlation between our event and this tragic incident."

Sponsor Content


All-access pass to the top stories, events and offers around town.

  • Top Stories


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >