Airbnb to ban ‘party houses’ after a deadly Halloween shooting

The shooting left five dead.


Alexandra Samuels


Posted on Nov 3, 2019   Updated on May 19, 2021, 11:53 pm CDT

Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky said Saturday that the company will ban “party houses” after a deadly shooting at a California home that was rented through the service. 

Chesky announced the upcoming change Saturday in a series of tweets. The company will also create a “party house” rapid response team, he said, and take immediate actions against users who violate their new policies.

Chesky also said the platform would “get rid of abusive host and guest conduct.” He also said the team would work with expand manual screenings of “high-risk reservations.”

Margaret Richardson from Airbnb’s executive team will oversee the new team, Chesky said, and is being tasked with initiating a 10-day sprint to “review and accelerate” the development of the company’s new initiatives. 

Saturday’s announcement comes after a deadly Halloween party in Orinda, California. According to the Washington Post, police say people arrived in costume for a “mansion party” at the Airbnb property without the permission of the host. The first shots were heard around 11pm on Thursday, and three victims were pronounced dead at the scene. Another died at John Muir Medical Center, according to a statement released Friday night; a fifth victim died late Friday night, the local sheriff said in a statement.

All five victims were under 30 and from the Bay Area, according to police. 

Airbnb has reportedly removed the listing from its site and banned the person who rented the home, the Post reports. As of late Friday, police were still working to identify the suspect and the motive for the shooting. 

Airbnb spokesman Bret Breit told the Mercury News the company was “horrified” by the tragedy and are working with California law enforcement “to offer our support with his investigation into who committed this senseless violence.”

“We must do better, and we will,” Chesky tweeted Saturday. “This is unacceptable.”


H/T TechCrunch

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*First Published: Nov 3, 2019, 10:26 am CST