The deadliest mass shooting in the modern history of the United States occurred Sunday night at a concert outside Mandalay Bay on the world-renowned Las Vegas Strip.
Reports say at least 50 people were killed, and hundreds of others were wounded. Early Monday police identified the shooter as 64-year-old Stephen Craig Paddock, a Nevada resident. He used a long-range rifle from a room in the hotel to unleash the carnage, police say.
“Paddock opened fire on a crowd of more than 22,000 concert-goers from his hotel room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel on Sunday evening at approximately 10:08 p.m,” said a press release. “The victims were across the street attending the Route 91 Harvest Festival concert when bullets rang out. LVMPD SWAT responded to the call, breached the hotel room and found the suspect dead. The Clark County Fire Department estimated that approximately 406 people were transported to area hospitals and 50 are dead following Sunday evening’s shooting.”
“This is a tragic incident, and one that we have never experienced in this valley,” LVMPD Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said at press conference. Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval issued a statement on Twitter, calling the shooting a “tragic and heinous act of violence [that] has shaken the Nevada family,” adding that it was also an “act of cowardice.”
The shooting temporarily halted flights at McCarran International Airport and put the nearby casinos on lock-down. MGM Resorts, owner of the casino, issued a statement as well, calling the event “tragic” and saying its “thoughts and prayers” are with the victims.
Country music singer Jason Aldean was performing when the shooting started.
Critics of the media coverage said the shooting should be widely labeled an act of domestic terrorism. The debate will surely continue in the weeks ahead.
Poker player Dan Bilzerian was at the concert, and he posted a video of him fleeing the scene after apparently witnessing a victim get shot in the head.
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