Wednesday, October 4, 2017

The Paddock Mystery

John R. Houk
© October 4, 2017

If you’ve been watching the media since Sunday, you are very aware that Stephen Paddock is the lone gunman at Mandalay Bay Massacre. He paid for two suites on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Casino and Hotel. Stocked the rooms with 23-gun weapons and the ammunition to load them. Then Paddock proceeded to meticulously kill 59 people and wound 527 outdoor concert goers to a Route 91 Harvest Country Music Festival in Las Vegas Nevada.


So far nobody knows or at least the city, State and Federal authorities aren’t sharing a motive with the public.

Here’s the thing. Paddock was a retired 64-year old wealthy White guy from Mesquite, NV; about 80 miles or so from Las Vegas. When I first heard about the bloody shooting and the likely planning that had to go into Paddock’s murder spree, my first thought was Islamic terrorism. If crazy Muslims didn’t do it, then it must have been crazy the Marxist Antifa/Black Live Matter types. OR I gave an outside consideration to Right Wing violent extremist groups like Neo-Nazis or White Identity racists.

BUT THEN I heard some info on Fox News. The man was 64, he had a lot of dough, and held no ideology of the Left, Right or Crazy Religion. His bad habit was gambling his fortune – I heard – made from Real Estate deals.

Stephen Paddock does not fit the profile of any kind of crazy ideology on the Left, Right or Religion.

So I’m going with a 5 Fast Facts post about Stephen Paddock until further info develops – if at all.

You might find The Australian article interesting since Paddock’s girlfriend - Marilou Danley – is an Australian citizen (born in the Philippines) which has 10/4/17 updated info. (Head’s up: The Australian may allow only one view then ask you to pay for a subscription when you return. It is a long article loaded with info and that is the reason for the head’s up.)

Stephen Paddock: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Published Oct 2, 2017 at 6:06am
Updated Oct 3, 2017 at 11:46pm

Stephen Paddock has been identified as the gunman who opened fire on concertgoers at the Route 91 Harvest country music festival in Las Vegas on Sunday, leaving 59 people dead and more than 500 wounded in the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history, police said.

The shooter, a 64-year-old from Mesquite, Nevada, was firing from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel down at the festival, which was located in a fairgrounds area on Las Vegas Boulevard, hitting concertgoers. Officers responded to the hotel room and engaged the suspect, police said. They do not believe at this time that there were any other shooters, despite reports of multiple gunmen. Police said they do not have an accurate number of victims yet, saying the totals they’ve released so far are estimates.

Paddock’s brother told The Associated Press that the shooter was a retired accountant who became a multimillionaire through real estate investments and high stakes gambling. “He was a guy who had money,” Eric Paddock said of his brother. “He went on cruises and gambled.”

This story is still developing and not much is known about Stephen Paddock so far. Here is what we do know about him and what we know about the shooting:

1. Stephen Paddock, a Former Mailman & IRS Agent, Had 23 Guns Inside His Hotel Room

Police said the shooter, identified as Stephen Paddock, was a “local individual” who was firing from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel just outside the concert area. He was found dead inside the hotel room, where 23 guns were later found, after a police SWAT team used an explosive breach to blow open the door and then engaged with him. Police said they believe he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound before officers arrived in the room. A security guard who went to the room before officers arrived was shot through the door by the gunman. His condition was not known Monday night.

The concert festival was taking place in an outdoor area across from the Mandalay Bay and Luxor casinos on the famed Las Vegas Strip. A video taken by someone at the concert shows the moment when gunfire, described by police and witnesses as coming from an automatic weapon, erupted, with several shots fired in rapid succession:

Posted by ediis0nn
Published on Oct 2, 2017 [Blog Editor: The Youtube redirect link failed in my browser. Here’s David Sakach’s Twitter link:]


Police said 12 rifles seized during searches in the hotel room and his homes had “bump stocks,” which are legal modifications that simulate automatic fire. Police said they found a total of 47 firearms, including rifles, shotguns and pistols, purchased legally in Nevada, California, Texas and Utah. Police and sources who have spoken to multiple media outlets have described a shooter’s perch within the hotel room, where he smashed out windows to fire at the concert crowd with guns mounted on bipods. Police said he had two cameras in the hallway of the hotel, including hidden in a room service cart, and in the peephole of his door to watch for approaching police.

Photos and videos from the concert festival also showed multiple victims, including people on the ground, bleeding. The shooting was first reported about 10 p.m. local time.

Active shooters at Mandalay Bay/Route 91 with automatic weapons & people down. Stay away from the Vegas strip!

— Justin Aaron Morris (@IAMJUSTINAARON) October 2, 2017

Paddock was semi-retired, managing real estate properties that his brother said made him millions of dollars, and gambling as a high roller at casinos in Las Vegas and near his Mesquite, Nevada, home, in recent years. He is a former IRS agent and letter carrier for the U.S. Postal Service, The Associated Press reports. A government spokesperson told the AP that the shooter worked for the USPS from 1976 to 1978 as a mailman and then worked for the Internal Revenue Service for six years, until 1984, as an agent. After that, he took a job as an auditor for a defense contractor.

Posted by Erick M
Published on Oct 2, 2017

All credit to this recording goes to broadcastify. Only reuploading this to help more people be able to listen to what exactly took place. Listener discretion is advised.

According to police scanner transmissions, 72 minutes passed between the first shots fired and when officers breached the hotel room where Paddock was holed up. Police believe he was firing into the crowd for about 9 to 11 minutes, unloading about 20 volleys of bullets from hundreds of yards away.

Videos show the area from where he was shooting from:

These maps show where the shooting occurred:

Posted by Brad Herman
Published on Oct 2, 2017

My heart goes out to those effected by this horrific tragedy. When the news broke I was having a hard time understanding the layout of the festival, the security, the police, and the shooter. I used Apple maps and was able to understand the location better. I put this out there Incase it’s helpful to anyone else.

You can listen to police scanner audio from the moment officers entered the room below:

Stephen Craig Paddock, 64, had lived on Babbling Brook Court in Mesquite, Nevada, since June 2016. He previously lived in Reno, Nevada, from 2011 to 2016, and also had an address in Melbourne, Florida, from 2013 to 2015. He had also lived in Henderson, Nevada, and several locations in Texas, including Mesquite, and California since 1990. He was born April 9, 1953. Paddock graduated from Cal State Northridge in 1977.

Mesquite is located about 80 miles, or 1 hour and 16 minutes, away from Las Vegas, along Nevada’s border with Arizona. Mesquite, a city in Clark County, is home to about 17,400 people, including several retirement communities, along with casinos and golf courses.

Sheriff Joe Lombardo, when asked by a reporter if the shooting was an “act of terrorism,” said “no, not at this point. We believe it was a local individual. He resides here locally. I’m not at liberty to give you his place of residence yet, because it’s an ongoing investigation, we don’t know what his belief system was at this time. Right now we believe he is the sole aggressor at this point and the scene is static.”

Police have not yet released a motive. Paddock does not have any known ties to terrorist organizations, NBC’s Pete Williams reports. ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack, claiming, without evidence, that Paddock is a “soldier” who converted to Islam months ago and was fighting for the so-called Islamic State, The Associated Press reports.

“We have determined to this point no connection to an international terror group,” FBI Special Agent-in-Charge Aaron Rouse said at a press conference. He said they are continuing to investigate to ensure that is a fact.

But ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack through its Amaq propaganda agency and said the shooter, “executed the operation in response to calls to target countries of the coalition,” but did not name Paddock, The Associated Press reports. According to the AP, ISIS often claims responsibility for attacks the group has inspired, but did not have any direct involvement in carrying out. The terror group has often instructed its followers to carry out lone wolf attacks, using guns, knives or vehicles to kill as many people as possible. Las Vegas has previously been threatened by ISIS, including in a recent video.

ISIS does not claim every shooting or incident as being carried out by its followers, but it has made false claims in the past, including in June 2017 when the terror group claimed its follower had launched an attack at a casino in Manila. Officials later said the incident was a robbery carried out by an indebted gambler.

U.S. intelligence authorities are aware of the claim and are tracking it, Voice of America’s Jeff Seldin reports.

“Surprising as it sounds, statement issued on legit primary source. Interestingly, Amaq released 2 statements: one claiming attacker as an #ISIS soldier, & 2nd that he ”converted to Islam” months ago,” Rita Katz of the SITE Intelligence group says.”) Given what is known of attacker Stephen Paddock, #ISIS needs evidence. Otherwise, might make ISIS appear (more) desperate for claims.”

Lombardo said multiple firearms were found inside the hotel room. He said the room is still being processed and further details weren’t immediately available. KTNVciting police sources, reports that Paddock had 23 guns inside the hotel room, along with two platforms set up to shoot from. He also had cameras to see police arriving, the news station reports. He is believed to have used long range rifles, News 8 Now reports. Police suspect that at least one of the weapons was modified to allow it to function as a rapid-fire weapon, according to CNN. The guns included a handgun, along with a .223 caliber and a .308 caliber rifle, CNN reports. Police believe that the weapons were purchased legally.

Along with the weapons, police believe he had some sort of a hammer that he used to smash the hotel’s windows prior to the shooting, CNN reports. Ammonia nitrate, a chemical compound used in fertilizer and that can be used to make explosives, was in his car, police said. No other chemicals or compounds were found in the vehicle.

Las Vegas Undersheriff Kevin McMahill told CNN that they found Paddock by listening to where the gunshots were coming from.

Posted by news672
Published on Oct 2, 2017


Deceased Las Vegas shooting suspect identified as 64-year-old Stephen Paddock

Mari-Lou Darnley was described as an Asian female, about 4'11 and 111 pounds. Authorities told the public to keep an eye out for a Hyundai with a Nevada plate: 114B40 and a Chrysler with a Nevada plate 19D401.

At least 20 people were killed and 100 injured in a mass shooting at a country music festival at the Mandalay Bay hotel in Las Vegas.

The lone suspect was killed in an engagement with Las Vegas officers, police confirmed in a briefing held around 1:30 a.m.

They described the suspect as a "lone wolf" and do not believe there are other suspects involved. The suspect was described as a local of the Las Vegas area and officials do not believe he is connected with terrorism groups.

Police were actively searching for a woman described as an associate of the suspect.

The associate was identified as Marilou Danley. She is an Asian woman, about 4 feet, 11 inches tall, weighing about 111 pounds. Police are trying to locate her and described her as a companion traveling with the suspect.

The Route 91 country music festival was taking place at the Mandalay. Hundreds of people were seen fleeing the area.

The shooting took place at the end of a performance by Jason Aldean. The singer was not injured in the shooting.

Officers obtained a warrant to search the home in Mesquite where the gunman lived. That search was completed Monday and police said they had no new intelligence to provide at a press conference. Police said they found 18 additional guns, explosives, thousands of rounds of ammunition and electronic devices inside the house. They located another property in northern Nevada and were planning to search that.

Public records do not show any criminal convictions for Paddock in Nevada. Undersheriff McMahill told CNN that he had no major “derogatory” criminal record other than a minor traffic citation in Las Vegas. Mesquite Police told CBS News that he had no run-ins with him. They said he lived in a retirement community, called Sun City and wasn’t a military veteran.

“We believe it’s a solo actor. A lone wolf,” Lombardo said. “We are comfortable that the primary aggressor in this event has expired or passed away and is no longer a threat.”

Paddock is believed to have checked into the Mandalay Bay hotel as a guest, The Associated Press reports. He had been there since September 28, police said. He rented two rooms, one facing east and one facing north, the Nevada Independent reports. Investigators are still working to determine what he was doing prior to the shooting.

Posted by Fox News
Published on Oct 3, 2017

Fox viewer shares footage of the hotel room used by the Vegas shooter taken one year ago.

According to police, the gunman had multiple weapons inside the room, and hotel employees went “to and fro” during the days before the shooting, but saw “nothing nefarious.”

Published on Oct 3, 2017

Inside the hotel room used by Las Vegas massacre gunman Stephen Paddock.

Christopher Sullivan, who managers Guns & Guitars in Mesquite, told the New York Times that Paddock bought three guns, a handgun and two rifles, in the last year. Sullivan told the newspaper he passed a routine federal screening. “The man does not have a criminal history,” he said.

Sullivan said, “We have cooperated with local and federal authorities.” He called Paddock a “normal fellow, normal guy – nothing out of the ordinary. As for what goes on in a person’s mind, I couldn’t tell you. I know nothing about him personally.”

When asked about a possible motive, Sheriff Joe Lombardo told reporters, “I can’t get into the mind of a psychopath at this point.”

The first of the victims killed was identified as Sonny Melton, of Tennessee. You can read about the victims as they are identified here. They include two police officers who were on duty and were shot, police said. One is in critical, but stable, condition after surgery. Another police officer was off duty and at the concert and was killed, Sheriff Joe Lombardo said. “Obviously this is a tragic incident. And one that we have never experienced in this valley,” Lombardo said.

GoFundMe account has been set up to raise money for the victims. You can make a donation here.

2. He Berated His Girlfriend at the Starbucks They Often Frequented, the Workers There Say

Police were looking for a “person of interest,” Marilou Danley. She was described as a “companion” of the shooter and police and Paddock’s family have now called her his boyfriend. Police have since made contact with her, but still would like to question her. She is out of the country, and was not in the United States during the shooting, but it is unclear where she is, with reports indicating she is in her native Philippines, and others that she is in Tokyo or Australia.

“We are interested in talking to her for followup,” Lombardo said at a press conference. Police were also looking for two vehicles with Nevada plates, a Hyundai Tucson with license plate number 114B40 and a Chrysler Pacifica Touring with plate number 19D401. They were registered to the gunman. Lombardo said the vehicles have been found.

Police said Danley, 62, lived with the shooter in Mesquite. Public records show she had lived at the same address as him since January 2017. CNN reports that she has been cleared of any involvement in the shooting.

Danley and Paddock were seen often at a Starbucks in Mesquite, the Los Angeles Times reports. Workers there said he often mistreated her in front of them, berating her verbally.

“It happened a lot,” Esperanza Mendoza, the Starbucks supervisor, told the newspaper. She said he would always order a Venti mocha cappuccino and she would get a medium caramel macchiato. Mendoza said Danley would ask Paddock to let her use his casino card to make the purchases.

“He would glare down at her and say—with a mean attitude—‘You don’t need my casino card for this. I’m paying for your drink, just like I’m paying for you.’ Then she would softly say, ‘OK’ and step back behind him. He was so rude to her in front of us,” Mendoza said.

She said he was tall, had a beer belly and often had heavy bags under his eyes. “He looked like he never slept because of the large bags under his eyes,” Mendoza told the Times. Danley was shorter and stood at his elbow when they were next to each other. Workers at Starbucks were shocked when they saw Paddock’s photo.

“That’s because of what he’d done and because we have been face to face with this man so many times,” Mendoza told the newspaper.

Police said they still want to talk to her and get her back to the country. Her family is from the Philippines. According to ABC News, sources said Paddock has sent “tens of thousands” of dollars to someone in the Philippines in recent months.

Marilou Danley’s Facebook profile reads, “Proud mom and grandma who lives life to the fullest.” Her last public post was an update of her profile picture in August. She had posted numerous photos of herself. Friends commented on her looks, and she wrote under one, “Thanks That was taken at Wiltshire Roof Top Restaurant in L.A. In 2016, she wrote in the comment thread under a photo, Kuha Sa Jumeira Beach, Dubai.

She said on her Linkedin profile that she has worked at a casino in the past. She has also lived in Sparks and Reno, Nevada, along with Canton, Ohio; Springdale, Arkansas; and Memphis, Tennessee, according to public records. Danley once worked as a “high limit hostess,” to members of loyalty club at Atlantis Casino in Reno. Members of Club Paradise spent large quantities of money and received discounted hotel rooms, meals and other amenities, the New York Times reports.

Earlier scanner traffic indicated that police may have gotten Danley’s name, at least in part, from a credit/debit card left in the Mandalay Bay hotel room by the main suspect. “He was utilizing some of her identification,” Sheriff Joe Lombardo said.

She was previously married to Geary Danley, of Arkansas, who is not believed to have any connection to the shooting, despite some on social media saying police have been searching for him.

You can read more about Danley at the link below:

3. Paddock Gambled More Than $10,000 a Day, Had a Pilot’s License & Once Worked for a Defense Contractor

Sheriff Joe Lombardo said details about Paddock’s background are still being determined by investigators. NBC News earlier reported that Paddock was having relationship issues, but that has not been confirmed. His exact relationship with the woman he was living with, Marilou Danley, was not clear Monday afternoon.

Paddock is not believed to have had children, CNN reports. He was previously married, but had been divorced from that woman for 27 years after 6 years of marriage, CNN reports.

Police told CBS News that he had recently been gambling, including at the Mandalay Bay casino, and used Marilou Danley’s ID at a “slot club.” Undersheriff Kevin McMahill told CBS that there was a “gaming club, slot club, that casinos use and he was at one point using that card to gamble with. We know he’s been gambling.”

According to NBC News, Paddock gambled more than $10,000 per day, and at times reached levels of $20,000 to $30,000 per day, at Las Vegas casinos. A source gave that information to NBC News based on Multiple Currency Transaction Reports. “According to a U.S. statute, a CTR is a Treasury- and IRS-mandated report that casinos have to file when ‘each transaction in currency involving cash-in and cash-out of more than $10,000 in a gaming day,'” NBC reports. The news network said it is not clear if the transactions reported by Paddock were losses or wins.

He also played a local casino in Mesquite:

️ (@LATvives) October 2, 2017

He enjoyed playing $100-a-hand poker, according to CNN. NBC News reports that he Paddock had recently made large gambling transactions, but it was not known if those were the result of wins or losses.

Clark County court records show that Paddock sued a Las Vegas strip hotel in 2012. He filed the lawsuit against Cosmopolitan Hotels & Resorts Inc. in September 2012. The case was dismissed with prejudice on October 3, 2014, and then later settled through arbitration. Records show he was suing for “Negligence – Premises Liability.” According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Paddock claimed in the lawsuit he “slipped and fell on an obstruction on the floor” and was injured because of the “dangerous condition.”

Other public records show that Paddock had an airmen’s certification. According to the FAA, Paddock was issued the private pilot license on November 17, 2003, and was rated as being able to fly a single-engine airplane and an instrument airplane. He last had a medical examination in February 2008. “MUST HAVE AVAILABLE GLASSES FOR NEAR VISION,” the records state. He was living in Mesquite, Texas, in Dallas County, at the time.

Paddock owned two aircraft, according to NBC News. Paddock appears to have worked as an accountant or auditor, ABC News reports. He also had a hunting license in Alaska, according to ABC.

NBC News reports Paddock briefly worked for a defense contractor and managed real estate properties. The defense contractor, Lockheed Martin, said in a statement that Paddock worked for a predecessor company from 1985 to 1988. “We’re cooperating with authorities to answer questions they may have about Mr. Paddock and his time with the company.”

4. His Brother Says the Family Is ‘Dumbfounded’ by What Happened & Says the Shooter, Who Had No Religious or Political Affiliation, ‘Must Have Snapped’

Tracy Connor, a NBC News investigative reporter, spoke to Paddock’s family and was told they are shocked by what happened. His brother told Connor there were no warning signs. He said he was “just a guy” who lived in Mesquite and went to shows in Las Vegas and gambled there. The brother said he had a girlfriend and was semi-retired after having a series of jobs he would not get into.

Eric Paddock, the gunman’s brother, told the Daily Mail that the family is “dumbfounded” and said there was “absolutely no indication he could do something like this.” He added that Stephen Paddock had no political or religious affiliation.

Paddock was not a registered voter, as either a Democrat or a Republican, in Clark County or elsewhere in Nevada, where his permanent residence was located. He was also not a registered voter in Florida, despite some social media claims he was a registered Democrat there.

Eric Paddock said “he was just a guy. Something happened, he snapped or something.”

Eric Paddock, who lives in Central Florida along with many members of the shooter’s family, told the Daily Mail, “He’s my brother, we don’t have a very close relationship but we talk occasionally. There’s no rhyme or reason here, it makes no sense. He has no political affiliation, no religious affiliation, as far as we know. This wasn’t a terror attack.”

According to the Orlando Sentinel, Eric Paddock has talked to police. He lives in Orlando along with other family members. Stephen Paddock once owned property in Melbourne, Florida, public records show, but it is not clear if he ever lived there, the newspaper reports. He also had an address in Nevada at the same time. He bought it in 2013 and sold it for $235,000, the Sentinel reprots [sic].

“We are completely dumbfounded,” Eric Paddock told the newspaper. “We can’t understand what happened.”

Paddock told CBS News he last spoke to his brother, who was a country music fan, after Hurricane Irma. You can watch a series of videos of Eric talking about his brother below:

Eric Paddock also spoke to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, crying as he told a reporter, “We have no idea how this happened. It’s like an asteroid just fell on top of our family. There is no reason we can imagine why Stephen would do something like this. All we can do is send our condolences to the people who died. Just no reason, no warning.”

Stephen Paddock does not appear to have a Facebook profile or other social media presence.

His father was Patrick Benjamin Paddock, a bank robber who was on the FBI’s Most Wanted List, NBC News reports. He was described in a FBI wanted poster as having “employed violence in attempting to evade arrest,” and having “been diagnosed as being psychopathic, with possible suicidal tendencies.”

See more photos and videos from the shooting here:

5. The Gunman Fired Dozens of Shots, Forcing Singer Jason Aldean Off the Stage & Concertgoers Racing to the Exits

About 22,000 fans were in the fairgrounds area, where there were multiple stages and other areas set up for the festival, according to The Associated Press. Concertgoer Kodiak Yazzi, 36, told the AP that the music stopped temporarily after a sound that was like a firecracker. It then started up again before another round of pops sent performers ducking for cover and fleeing the stage, while panicked fans also rushed for the exits. Yazzi told the AP he took cover and saw flashes of light coming from the Mandalay Bay hotel tower above the concert. He said the bursts would start and stop for about five minutes.

The concert festival was in its third day. The festival’s website showed that performers Sunday night included Jake Owen and Luke Combs, along with Jason Aldean, who was set to take the stage about 9:40 p.m. ABC News reports that Aldean was on stage when the shooting occurred, but is OK. A video shows Aldean singing and playing a guitar as gunshots ring out. He briefly continues to perform, before stopping and running off the stage. You can watch the video below:

Aldean said on Instagram, “Tonight has been beyond horrific. I still dont know what to say but wanted to let everyone know that Me and my Crew are safe. My Thoughts and prayers go out to everyone involved tonight. It hurts my heart that this would happen to anyone who was just coming out to enjoy what should have been a fun night. #heartbroken #stopthehate.”

Country singer Jake Owen was among those at the Route 91 Harvest Festival. He tweeted, “Gun shots!!! Vegas. Pray to god. Love you guys. Love you Pearl.”

Owen later tweeted, “Praying for everyone here in Vegas. I witnessed the most unimaginable event tonight. We are okay. Others arent. Please pray.”

Another musician, Luke Combs, tweeted there was an active shooter at Route 91 Harvest, a three-day country music festival being held on the Las Vegas Strip.

“Active shooter at @Route91Harvest in Vegas. We’re safe. Love you guys,” Combs said.

Dan Bilzerian, the professional poker player and businessman, posted a video running from the concert saying, “a girl just got shot in the f*cking head.”

Witnesses told reporter Nathan O’Neal that hundreds of shots were fired after a loud bang that sounded like a firecracker.

Witnesses tell me people were getting shot around them #LasVegas@news3lv

— Nathan O'Neal (@NateNews3LV) October 2, 2017

“Clip after clip after clip, bullets flying everywhere, people running,” the witness said. “It was really, really bad. We were the furthest VIP stages away from Mandalay Bay and they (the bullets) were ricocheting everywhere where we fear. They were firing from somewhere high and they were unloading clip after clip after clip. Multiple shooters, has to be.”

But police are saying they believe there was only one shooter. In chaotic active shooter situations, witnesses often report hearing or seeing multiple shooters, as sounds echo and come from different directions, and police and others are misidentified as gunmen.

Two women who were in the front row of the concert told Fox News’ Lauren Blanchard they heard the shooting start and saw a woman with an apparent gunshot wound to the head. She was not moving, they said. “We were at the Jason Aldean concert and everything was fine. And then we heard two pop noises and thought it was the sound system. He kept continuing like nothing was wrong and then we heard it continue and he was still going and then he fell,” one of the women said. The other woman told Blanchard, “(Aldean) dropped and ran, he just ran off the stage. And then people started dropping to the floor and we were running out.”

Another witness told ABC News, “Jason Aldean was playing and it just kind of sounded like some fireworks going off, and then I think there was the first kind of volley and then the second volley, and my buddy says ‘I got hit.’ He got hit three times and people started diving to the ground. It was pretty much chaotic. Lots of people got hit.” The witness said his friend, who was shot three times in the chest, is going to be OK. He said another victim he was trying to help get to the hospital died in his arms.

Witness Jake Freeman told ABC News he went to the rooftop lounge at the top of his hotel, overlooking the strip. “There were people drinking. Nobody had any idea what was going on. And I had a birds-eye view of the Route 91 Harvest music festival right across the street. My friend and I personally saw crowds of people running out of the festival and bodies hitting the ground. We absolutely watched these people getting gunned down from the shooter on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay. We couldn’t see the Mandalay Bay at all, the Mandalay Bay was behind us. We did realize that they were being shots. We could hear the gunshots, coupled with what we heard, machine gun fire downstairs, we knew that it was an active shooter situation. We actually went down to the lobby to see if we could find out more.” He said when the elevator doors opened to the lobby, “the air just reeked of gunpowder. Crowds of people were running to the elevators trying to escape.”

Videos taken by concertgoers at the festival show people screaming and running as multiple gunshots can be heard. A witness says it sounded like a “machine gun.” In the video one person can be heard yelling, “get down,” while another shouts, “stay down” as shots ring out.

Police said in the initial radio dispatches that shots were fired and it sounded like it was coming from an “automatic” weapon. “We have an active shooter inside the fairgrounds,” the officer said:

People at the Mandalay Bay casino and hotel reported that the casino was being evacuated.

Several roads in the area were being shut down and police were telling people in the area to barricade inside.

— Warren (@Warrystar) October 2, 2017

Other hotels were also being shut down with guests barricading themselves inside rooms, according to social media reports. Officers, including several SWAT units, were searching the hotels and responding to multiple calls of reported shooters that turned out to be false, according to scanner reports.

“There has been multiple, multiple phone calls and accusations, or conjecture coming through social media that there are multiple shooters at other resorts, that has been proven to be false,” Sheriff Joe Lombardo said. “Additionally there has been accusations or beliefs there is some explosives going off. That is also fault. The only explosive in this event was from our SWAT team breaching the room.”

Those who are in lock down at casinos and other locations along the strip are being asked to stay where they are.

“I still want them to shelter in place,” Lombardo said. “They will be contacted by first responders and they will advise them when they are free to go. It is better to shelter in place than to be unaware.”

The FBI and ATF are also at the scene, according to reports. But they have not taken over the investigation at this time, ABC News reports.

Police have asked anyone with cell phone or other videos from the shooting to provide them to investigators. “Anybody that may have cell phone video or any type of video associated with this event that would be a benefit to the investigation, please respond to the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department headquarters at 400 South Martin Luther King and we will take custody of that video. Please bring that down to the headquarters.”

Family members can go to a “family retreat area” to help locate loved ones at the headquarters. Anyone looking for information about family members can call 1-866-535-5654.

The White House said in a statement that President Donald Trump has been briefed on the shooting.

“The President has been briefed on the horrific tragedy in Las Vegas. We are monitoring the situation closely and offer our full support to state and local officials. All of those affected are in our thoughts and prayers,” Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said. Trump then tweeted:

Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval tweeted, “A tragic & heinous act of violence has shaken the #Nevada family. Our prayers are w/ the victims & all affected by this act of cowardice.”

Police said in a press release, “This is still an active investigation. The Federal Bureau of Investigations is asking for anyone with videos or photos concerning the shooting to call 1-800-CALLFBI or (800) 225-5324. LVMPD and Clark County Coroner’s Office have set up a hotline for family or friends to report a missing loved one connected to this incident. The hotline is only to take reports on missing people. The number is (866) 535-5654. LVMPD also opened up a family reunification center at its headquarters at 400 S. Martin L. King Blvd. in Building B. The identification process of all of the injured and the deceased will take time, so authorities are asking the public for patience.”

Police added, “Anyone wishing to help is asked to donate blood for the injured victims of the Strip shooting. United Blood Services will start taking donations at 7 a.m. at two locations: 6930 W. Charleston in Las Vegas or 601 Whitney Ranch Drive in Henderson. UMC will also be hosting a blood drive in conjunction with United Blood Services. It will be held at UMC’s Delta Point Building located at 901 N. Rancho Lane. There will be updates as to the exact time of the blood drive as more information is available.”
The Paddock Mystery
John R. Houk
© October 4, 2017
Stephen Paddock: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Copyright © 2017 Heavy, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Heavy is a New York-based digital media company that owns and operates and is a real-time news and information portal reaching 35 million unique visitors per month. is Heavy’s Spanish language real-time news and information portal reaching 2 million unique visitors per month.

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In 2012 pivoted from original video entertainment to real-time news and information appealing to a broad audience. From 2012 to 2016, with a new team led by Editor-in-Chief Aaron Nobel, the site’s audience has grown from 3 million to 35 million organic unique visitors per month.

In 2015 we expanded with the launch of our Spanish-language site,

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A Brief History of Heavy

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