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Las Vegas Shooting Massacre

by Thomas published on October 2, 2017

58 people were killed and 515 others injured after a gunman opened fire Sunday night at a country music festival opposite the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino on the Las Vegas Strip, authorities said.

The suspect, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, a resident of Mesquite, Nev., was killed after a SWAT team burst into the hotel room from which he was firing at the crowd.

Police said they have succeeded in locating a woman, identified as Marilou Danley, who was believed to be traveling with Paddock.

One of the dead includes an off-duty police officer who was attending the concert. Several other officers from Nevada and California, both on and off duty, were wounded by gunfire.

The suspect's brother said the family is in shock and that Stephen Paddock 'has never even drawn a gun.'

The "nonstop gunfire," according to one witness, sent more than 22,000 country music fans scrambling for their lives. Two sources familiar with the investigation said there was a combination of rifles and handguns at the scene, and one of the sources said there were 19 weapons in the room.

Terrified bystanders ducked, ran and then sprang into action, frantically caring for the wounded. Concertgoers who had just been enjoying the final night of the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival, which was taking place across the street from Mandalay Bay, made makeshift stretchers out of police barricades.

As ambulances rushed to the scene, they plugged wounds with their bare hands and used their clothing to try to stanch each other's bleeding. At least one man described a stranger who died in his arms.

An off-duty Las Vegas police officer who was attending the concert was among the dead, police said.

Jason Aldean was the headliner of Sunday night's concert; video showed his rushing off the stage amid the gunfire. Other performers from this weekend included country stars Jake Owen, Big & Rich, Luke Combs and Dylan Scott.

In the wake of the shooting, the Las Vegas Police Department said authorities responded to a room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel, where police said the suspected gunman, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, was dead. Police said they believe Paddock killed himself prior to police entry.

The motive was unclear. “I can't get into the mind of a psychopath,” Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said at a news conference this morning.

Officials said this morning they have found no connection between the shooting and any international terrorist group. Officials added that the suspect was not known to law enforcement.

Authorities said the suspect checked into the hotel Thursday and that they are searching hours of surveillance video. Authorities said the suspect brought the guns in himself. Police said Paddock, of Mesquite, Nevada, had no criminal history, save a minor citation. Authorities believe the suspect used a device similar to a hammer to smash the hotel room windows.

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