Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Las Vegas shooting: Authorities say attack was premeditated, search for motive continues


Right now this massive event smells more like a planned tightly timed operation.  Mr Paddock was merely in his hotel room when the team arrived and was shot out of hand.

Our best clue is the window knocked out several windows away on the same floor.  That suggests that the team split up as planned and set up in two nearby rooms and ultimately as they with drew, they threw their weapons into Paddocks room. quite possibly they actually retreated to a room on the same floor from which they had staged their attack.

Being disciplined, they would have left all weapons there to leave nothing attached to them.  Once they had entered the two rooms, they had all the time they wanted to set up and to shift unwelcome evidence out of their staging room.

Once over they would have presented as two to four chaps having a good time and ready to walk about.

The moment firing started they gave themselves exactly five minutes to blow off as much ammunition as possible and simply sprayed the crowd itself.  At that point they broke off and did a planned retreat back to their staging room. 

The reason i lay this out is that Paddock is not a convincing shooter.  He is 63, and not likely in good shape.  While he own guns, it is unlikely that he also spent ample time at the range to become super comfortable.  Rapid fire with a machine gun or several machine guns even, demands strength as the weapon will move a lot unless they have gotten a lot better since i have fired fifty years ago.  And i was then in combat shape.

There were two stations set up and that provides room for two shooters each.  Most likely though we have two shooters only and possibly a controller to handle back up and possibly a forth in the staging room watching for hall traffic.

Forensics should quickly shake this out and police work will likely discover who is involved.  To start with Paddock needs to be covered in ammunition residue conforming to an active shooter.  If he is then it is pretty clear he did it.  We just do not know anything confirmable yet..

Las Vegas shooting: Authorities say attack was premeditated, search for motive continues 

By Adam Frisk and Rebecca Joseph Global News

Authorities said the mass shooting of around 600 people, which killed 59, was premeditated and preplanned.

But Las Vegas Sheriff Joe Lombardo said the quick police response, along with the help of the security team at the Mandalay hotel, is the reason more lives weren’t lost.

Police found 23 weapons from the hotel room where Stephen Paddock staged his attack, and another 19 firearms from his home in Mesquite, Nev. Several thousand rounds of ammunition, explosives and electronics were also seized from the home.

At a press conference on Tuesday afternoon, Lombardo said an addition five handguns and two shotguns were found at another property in Reno, which Paddock owned.

The gunman also used a device called a bump stock which makes non-automatic weapons fire automatically. While the sheriff couldn’t say if the guns had been modified, he said the weapons were being sent to the FBI crime lab.

He says the fact that his officers were able to identify the location of the shooter so quickly was instrumental in ending the gunfire.

“We would not have engaged this individual in the time that we did – if it weren’t for the Mandalay security,” Lombardo said gratefully.

“I’m actually very proud of our people.” 

Las Vegas Sheriff says police saved hundreds of lives

Authorities also say the gunman in the Las Vegas shooting put a camera in a food service cart outside his hotel room.

Lombardo said that he believes Paddock had set up cameras inside and outside his room to see if anyone was coming to take him into custody. He did not release further details.

Police and other officials said they are still looking into to why Paddock opened fire from a sniper’s nest perched 32 floors above the Las Vegas Strip and rained gunfire down onto a concert. Lombardo said he hopes to know more about his motive within 48 hours.

The 64-year-old man opened fire on 22,000 people Sunday night just after 10 p.m. local time as country music star Jason Aldean was performing at the end of the three-day Route 91 Harvest Festival.

Paddock was not known to have served in the military, or to have suffered from a history of mental illness or to have registered any inkling of social disaffection, political discontent or radical views on social media.

On Tuesday, U.S. President Donald Trump described Paddock as a “sick man.”

“He was a sick man, a demented man. A lot of problems I guess and we are looking into him very, very seriously but we’re dealing with a very, very sick individual,” Trump said before boarding Marine One.

The president praised Las Vegas police, calling their response a “miracle.”

“Look we have a tragedy. What happened in Las Vegas is in many ways a miracle. The police department has done such an incredible job,” Trump said. “We’ll be talking about gun laws as time goes by. But I do have to say how quickly the police department was able to get in was really very much of a miracle. They’ve done an amazing job.”

All but three of the victims have been identified. Global News confirmed four Canadians were among those killed in Sunday’s rampage.

Jordan McIldoon, 23, a construction worker from Maple Ridge, B.C., was identified as one of the victims early Monday morning. Jessica Klymchuk, an educational assistant, librarian and bus driver from Alberta, was identified Monday afternoon.

On Tuesday, Calla Medig, of Jasper was confirmed as the third Canadian victim. Alberta Premier Rachel Notley expressed her condolences to both victims from the province.

Friends and family confirmed to Global News on Tuesday that Tara Roe, 34, from Okotoks, Alta., was killed in the Las Vegas rampage on Sunday.

Officials said a GoFundMe campaign dedicated to the victims has raised over $3.7 million in just over one day. Another $3.6 million was privately donated. While the details of how the funds will be distributed are still in the works, the money will be dedicated to helping with medical costs like surgeries as well as funeral costs.

On Tuesday, hospital officials said many of the wounded remain in critical condition.

“I have no idea who I operated on,” said Dr. Jay Coates, of the University Medical Center of Southern Nevada, told the Associated Press. “They were coming in so fast, we were taking care of bodies. We were just trying to keep people from dying.”

The doctor told the news agency that once he saw some of the wounds victims were suffering from, he knew the shooting was different from others.

“It was very clear that the first patient I took back and operated on that this was a high-powered weapon,” Coates told the Associated Press. “This wasn’t a normal street weapon. This was something that did a lot of damage when it entered the body cavity.”

U.S. officials also discounted a claim of responsibility by the militant Islamic State group.

Clark County Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said “good for them,” when told ISIS had claim responsibility for the attack.

“We have no evidence of that,” Lombardo said.

FBI special agent Aaron Rouse echoed the sheriff’s remarks on a terrorist group connection earlier Monday.

“We have determined to this point no connection with an international terrorist group,” the agent said.

A police tactical unit breached Paddock’s room in the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino only to find the shooter dead.

“We believe the individual killed himself prior to our entry,” Lombardo said. “There was a team of six officers that approached security.”

The team searched the hotel floor by floor, until they located the suspected room. When the approached the room, they “received gunfire,” so they backed off until a SWAT team was able to respond.

Lombardo said a security guard was shot in the leg through the hotel room door where the shooter was holed up.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau condemned the “senseless and cowardly act of violence.”

“Our hearts break for our American friends and neighbours today. On behalf of all Canadians, I offer my deepest condolences to those who lost loved ones and friends, and my prayers for a fast and full recovery for the many injured,” Trudeau said in a statement. “We stand with the United States, and share their pain and horror at such a senseless and cowardly act of violence. Las Vegas has long been celebrated by people from around the globe, including many Canadians.

“We grieve with this city and the United States. Such acts only strengthen our resolve to stand together, united,” the prime minister said.

On Monday, Trump condemned the attack as an “act of pure evil.”

“In moments of tragedy and horror, America comes together as one. And it always has,” Trump said in a televised address. “Our unity cannot be shattered by evil, our bonds cannot be broken by violence and though we feel such great anger at the senseless murder of our fellow citizens, it is our love that defines us today, and always will, forever.”

Sunday’s shooting came more than four months after a suicide bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England, that killed 22 people. Almost 90 people were killed by gunmen inspired by Islamic State at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris during a performance by Eagles of Death Metal in November 2015.

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