The most comprehensive look yet at how the Las Vegas concert massacre unfolded
In an 81-page investigative report released Friday, Las Vegas police gave their most comprehensive timeline to date on how the Oct. 1 massacre unfolded at a country music concert on the Strip.
The report did not give any greater insight into why gunman Stephen Paddock, an amateur gambler, opened fire on thousands of people from his room in the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, killing 58 people before killing himself.
Nor was it likely to settle questions about why police arrived on the 32nd floor, where Paddock was perched, only after he had stopped shooting.
But investigators’ findings gave a little more detail on what police know about Paddock’s activities before and during the shooting — important because of lingering questions about how Paddock’s preparations had gone unnoticed, and why it took so long for his deadly shooting spree to end.
Sept. 9: Paddock reserves a room at the Mandalay Bay hotel.
Sept. 25: Paddock checks into the hotel, with a check-out date of Oct. 2. He rolls one bag to his room himself, and a bellman uses a luggage cart to bring up four other bags. Then Paddock leaves and returns to his home in Mesquite, Nev.
Sept. 26: Paddock wires $50,000 to a bank account in the Philippines, where his girlfriend, Marilou Danley, is visiting family. Paddock then returns to Las Vegas and visits a pair of casino hotels before returning to Mandalay Bay, where he brings another six suitcases on a luggage cart, as well as another rolling suitcase, to his room. Paddock then begins gambling at the hotel overnight and into the next morning — for more than eight hours.
Sept. 27: Paddock insists on relocating to another room, saying he wants a better view, and is given a suite with two adjoining rooms. That night, Paddock drives back to Mesquite and buys luggage, razor blades, fake flowers, a vase and a Styrofoam ball at a Wal-Mart.
Sept. 28: Paddock buys a .308 bolt-action rifle from a gun store in Mesquite and wire-transfers an additional $50,000 to an account in the Philippines. Paddock also goes to a gun range before returning to Las Vegas. He brings another two rolling suitcases and a laptop bag to his Mandalay Bay room, and again gambles for more than six hours, until early the next morning.
Sept. 30: After spending Sept. 29 mostly in his room, Paddock places “Do not disturb” signs on his adjoining rooms, drives to Mesquite, and then returns to his Mandalay Bay suite with four more suitcases. He then drives back to Mesquite.
Oct. 1, the day of the attack: Paddock returns to Mandalay Bay early in the morning and gambles for four hours. He brings two more rolling suitcases and a bag to his room, and throughout the afternoon, officials say, he is detected opening and closing the doors to his suite multiple times, probably while preparing for his attack.
9:36 p.m.: Paddock deadbolts the door to one of his rooms, and then deadbolts the door to the other one 10 minutes later.
10 p.m.: Security guard Jesus Campos arrives via elevator on the 32nd floor to investigate an alert of an open door in a guest’s room down the hall from Paddock’s suite. Campos checks a stairwell door that blocked his entry to the floor minutes earlier and discovers that it has been fastened closed with an “L” bracket.
10:04 p.m.: Campos calls security dispatch to report the blocked door. His call is routed to the facility’s maintenance department, which dispatches maintenance engineer Stephen Schuck to go to the floor.
10:05 p.m.: Paddock fires two initial shots at the Las Vegas Village, the open-air venue across the street from the hotel where the Route 91 Harvest music festival is being held, with more than 20,000 attendees. Then he fires more.
10:06 p.m.: Campos hears what he later described as rapid drilling noises as Paddock fires about 100 rounds at concertgoers. Paddock, who has placed surveillance cameras outside his room, starts shooting through his door and down the hallway at Campos, hitting the security guard in the leg. Campos, who is unarmed, takes cover and radios a hotel dispatcher for help, giving Paddock’s room number on the 32nd floor.
10:07 p.m.: Paddock resumes firing hundreds of rounds at concertgoers. Two Las Vegas police officers are already in the building on another call. They head upstairs, presumably to try to find the source of the gunfire, along with two armed Mandalay Bay security guards. Over the next two minutes, Paddock takes several potshots at jet-fuel storage tanks at the nearby airport — striking them twice but not igniting the fuel — before resuming fire on the concert crowd.
10:10 p.m.: Schuck, the building engineer, arrives on the 32nd floor, and Campos yells for him to take cover. Paddock starts firing down the hallway, and Schuck radios hotel dispatch to send police to the 32nd floor.
10:11 p.m.: The two police officers arrive on the 31st floor — one floor below Paddock’s — as the gunman resumes firing on the concert crowd.
10:12 p.m.: Two armed Mandalay Bay security officers arrive on the 32nd floor, and the police and security officers on the 31st floor realize that the shooting is coming from one floor above them.
10:15 p.m.: Paddock fires his final shots at concertgoers.
10:16 p.m.: The two police officers on the 31st floor enter the stairwell outside the 32nd floor hallway but do not confront Paddock.
10:57 p.m.: Police breach the sealed 32nd-floor stairwell doorway.
11:20 p.m.: Police use explosives to blow open Paddock’s door, and they discover him dead.
11:26 p.m.: Police breach the interior door to Paddock’s second room, where a police officer accidentally fires three rounds into the room.
Matt Pearce is a national reporter for The Times. Follow him on Twitter at @mattdpearce.
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