Gunman Opens Fire At Las Vegas Concert Leaving 50 People Dead
LAS VEGAS (AP) — A gunman perched on the 32nd floor of a Las Vegas casino unleashed a shower of bullets on an outdoor country music festival below, killing at least 50 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.
More than 400 victims were taken to the hospital, authorities said.
SWAT officers using explosives stormed the gunman’s hotel room and found he had killed himself, authorities said.
There was no immediate word on the motive for the attack. The U.S. Homeland Security Department said there was no “specific credible threat” involving other public venues in the U.S.
Country music star Jason Aldean was performing Sunday night at the end of the three-day Route 91 Harvest Festival in front of a crowd of 22,000 when the gunman opened fire from inside the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino.
The gunman was identified as Stephen Craig Paddock, 64, of Mesquite, Nevada.
SWAT teams quickly descended on the concert and the casino, and officers used explosives to get into the hotel room where the suspect was inside, authorities said.
“What we are going to try to do as best we can is to get our first responders back on their feet and responding and conducting a proper investigation to ensure that we have the safety of this community at heart,” Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said.
Aldean was in the middle of a song when the shots came rapidly: Pop-pop-pop-pop. Video of the shooting then showed Aldean stopping and the crowd getting quiet as if it were unsure of what had just happened.
The gunman paused and then fired another volley, the muzzle flashes visible from the casino, as more victims fell to the ground while others fled in panic. Some hid behind concession stands, while others crawled under parked cars.