Las Vegas Shooter’s 32 Floor Position
A gunman perched on the 32nd floor of a Las Vegas hotel-casino unleashed a hail of bullets on an outdoor country music festival below, killing at least 59 people as tens of thousands of concertgoers screamed and ran for their lives, officials said Monday. It was the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.
At least 527 others were injured in the Sunday night attack, authorities said.
SWAT teams using explosives stormed the gunman’s hotel room in the sleek, gold-colored glass skyscraper and found he had killed himself, authorities said. The gunman,
an , identified as Stephen Craig Paddock, a 64-year-old retiree from Mesquite, Nevada, had as many as 10 guns with him, including rifles, they said. US media reports citing Clark county sheriff said, 18 more guns along with explosives and hundreds of rounds ammunition was found at suspect’s home 70 miles from Vegas. Ammonium nitrate was reportedly found in his car.
The sheriff said a check of federal and state databases showed Paddock was not on law enforcement authorities’ radar before the bloodbath.Aaron Rouse, the FBI agent in charge in Las Vegas, said investigators saw no immediate evidence connecting the attack to an international terror organization, despite a claim of responsibility from the Islamic State group.
Country music star Jason Aldean was performing at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in front of a crowd of more than 22,000 when the gunman in the 44-floor Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino apparently used a hammer-like device to smash out windows in his room and opened fire, the muzzle flashes visible in the dark, authorities said.
The crowd, funneled tightly into a wide-open space, had little cover and no easy way to escape. Victims fell to the ground while others fled in panic. Some hid behind concession stands, while others crawled under parked cars.
Kodiak Yazzie, 36, said the music stopped briefly after the first shots, then started up again before a second round of pops sent the performers ducking for cover and fleeing the stage.
Couples held hands as they ran through the dirt lot. Faces were etched with shock and confusion, and people wept and screamed. Some were bloodied, and some were carried out by fellow concertgoers. Dozens of ambulances took away the wounded, while some people loaded victims into their cars and drove them to the hospital.
The shooter appeared to fire unhindered for more than 10 minutes as Las Vegas police frantically tried to locate the man in one of the Mandalay Bay hotel towers, according to radio traffic. For several minutes, officers could not tell whether the automatic fire was coming from Mandalay Bay or the neighboring Luxor hotel Las Vegas.