A man was found dead at Burning Man, and police are investigating after his death was deemed 'suspicious'

  • The police said that a man was found dead at Burning Man on Thursday and that his death was being investigated as suspicious, the Reno Gazette Journal reported.
  • Authorities identified the man as Shane Billingham.
  • Burning Man is an annual arts-and-culture festival that kicked off last weekend in the Nevada desert.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The death of a man at the Burning Man festival is being investigated as “suspicious,” the police say, the Reno Gazette Journal reported on Friday.

The man was found dead Thursday at Burning Man, the nine-day festival in full swing in the middle of the Nevada desert. Upon further investigation by the medical examiner’s office, his death was deemed suspicious, the Gazette Journal said.

The police have since identified the man as Shane Billingham. He had already been declared dead by doctors at the festival’s medical tent when the police arrived, according to the report. The scene at Burning Man was secured for the investigation.


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Burning Man started August 25 and runs through September 3. Up to 80,000 attendees are expected over the nine-day festival of art installations, musical performances, and general mayhem. Past events have attracted influencers, celebrities, and the Silicon Valley elite.

This isn’t the first time someone has died at Burning Man, which has been running annually since 1986.

Last year, a vendor employee died; authorities had found him “unresponsive and not breathing” in a truck, SFGate reported. In 2017, a man died after running into the flames from an effigy being burned. In 2014, a woman died after “falling under a bus carrying participants,” Burning Man’s organisers wrote in a blog post.

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