Law enforcement says that there were relatively few arrests during the second weekend of the annual Coachella Valley Music Festival in Indio. Still, police say that roughly 101 people were arrested for a variety of alleged offenses over the weekend.
An Indio Police spokesman says that each day saw arrests in the mid 30s, primarily related to alleged alcohol or drug offenses. Drug arrests included allegations of possession of illegal drugs and possession with intent to sell offenses, according to Indio Police.
However, some allegations involving alleged drugs at Coachella have certainly caught the attention of the media, even though those alleged drug-related issues are not apparently connected to any suspicion of law enforcement. Incidents involving Noel Gallagher and Rihanna have made waves in the media.
Criminal charges require an evidentiary basis, but that standard may not apply as strongly to the media. Controversy has erupted over an exchange in the social media between Rihanna and MTV surrounding a photo that some media outlets have described as involving cocaine, while others say involves marijuana.
Meanwhile, Noel Gallagher, former Oasis front-man now appearing under his solo moniker “Noel Gallagher’ High Flying Birds” who performed at Coachella, says that he felt as if he were at an airport when he was searched at the festival. He says that he was subjected to a body search when he arrived. He says that security officials found 30 pills in his backpack. He says the search uncovered a bottle of sleeping pills.
Obviously, the media coverage of the stars is unrelated to any law enforcement allegations and no criminal charges are suggested that involve either Gallagher or Rihanna.
Beverly Hills Courier, “Fewer Arrests During Final Weekend of Coachella Music Fest,” April 23, 2012
The Sun, “Noel Gallagher rap over sleeping tablets at US gig,” Gordon Smart, April 16, 2012
National Post, “Rihanna white powder controversy: Was it marijuana or cocaine?” Leah Collins, April 20, 2012