The gunman who opened fire on a country music festival in Las Vegas may have wanted to survive and escape his attack, but a hotel security guard who approached his door and attracted the shooter's gunfire appears to have stopped the massacre, Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo said Wednesday.
“His bravery was amazing," Lombardo said of the Mandalay Bay hotel security guard, who continued to help police clear guests from the 32nd floor of the hotel even after being shot in the leg by the gunman through the door of the gunman's suite.
Investigators also confirmed that Stephen Paddock, 64, of Mesquite had also rented a room at the Ogden condo building earlier in September overlooking an even larger Vegas music event, the Life is Beautiful festival, featuring Gorillaz, Lorde, Chance the Rapper and other artists.
In the midst of mass tragedy, a new normal for collective mourning has emerged.
It's not uncommon for family, friends and strangers to grieve together on Facebook, on Twitter and even in the comments of online fundraising campaigns. That's been true after many recent tragedies and certainly the case in the days since the Las Vegas shooting left 59 dead and more than 500 wounded. Dozens of campaigns on the Go Fund Me website have raised millions for victims and their families, while serving as virtual memorials and tributes.
President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump visited doctors and patients Wednesday at a Las Vegas hospital that treated more than 100 victims from this week's mass shooting. "It makes you very proud to be an American when you see the job they’ve done," the president said.
Flanked by medical staff from University Medical Center, the region's only Level 1 trauma facility, Trump applauded the emergency response to the massacre. "I just want to congratulate everybody, it’s incredible work, incredible work you’ve done," he said.
Victims who might have died will instead be released from the hospital in the days or weeks ahead, Trump said.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein on Wednesday proposed legislation that would ban gun bump stocks, which police said were used by a Las Vegas shooter this week to make semi-automatic weapons work more like automatic weapons.
"The only reason to modify a gun is to kill as many people as possible in as short a time as possible," the Califormnia Democrat told reporters.
After the shooting , many Republicans said it wasn't the right time to talk about gun laws.
The gunman responsible for the massacre in Las Vegas first began buying guns two decades ago, a federal source said Wednesday, but the majority of the 47 guns he owned had been purchased since October 2016.
Stephen Paddock brought at least 23 weapons, mostly rifles, to the Mandalay Bay hotel room from which he opened fire on a country music concert across the street Sunday night, an attack which left 59 people dead and more than 500 injured.
Twelve of the guns were modified with “bump-fire” stocks, which are legal accessories that allow guns to fire at nearly fully automatic speed, officials said.
The first call came across the Las Vegas radio channel in a burst of static.
“We got shots fired,” the police officer said, in a breathless voice. “Sounded like an automatic firearm.”
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department’s scanner traffic, and body camera video released Tuesday, captured officers’ frantic efforts to find and stop the gunman firing into a crowd of 22,000 people from a perch high above the fairgrounds at a music festival.