For many, working an event like a music festival can be a really sweet gig. You get to serve food and beverages to hungry and thankful people, and even usually get to enjoy your off hours running around the festival for free. However, some designated security guards at Moonrise thought the pot wasn’t quite sweet enough and took advantage of their power over the other attendees. What ensued was nothing short of extortion.

According to Magnetic Mag multiple attendees have come forth claiming that members of the Moonrise security team were threatening other festival patrons for either drugs, money, or both. Guards were seen threatening to cut off peoples wristbands if they refused to comply and pay up. Apparently the security squad would lay in wait, watching for someone in the crowd to light a joint or step out of line somehow. The guards would then approach the law-breakers and threaten legal action or loss of wristband, unless of course the attendee in trouble agreed to hand over their entire stash of weed, or their money.

Not only is this behavior completely contrary to the togetherness and peacefulness that music festivals are meant to promote, but it’s also extremely illegal. The Legal Dictionary defines extortion as “obtaining money or property by threat to a victim’s property or loved ones, intimidation, or false claim of a right…It is a felony in all states”. Sounds like the right charge for what took place this past weekend.

Several who attended Moonrise have taken to social media to spread the word about what they witnessed at the festival.


Moonrise has not yet given an official statement regarding the incidents. If these multiple eye-witness accounts are true, this could mean some serious legal repercussions against the security staff involved.

Let’s hope some action is taken so that this kind of behavior never happens again at another festival. Intimidating happy people who paid to be there, threatening to cut their wristbands and extorting them for drugs and valuables, is just completely vile and loathsome behavior.

See our photos from Moonrise Festival 2016 here.