Deadliest Mass Shooting In U.S. History Rocks Las Vegas
By Alex Siordian, Bill Galluccio
October 2, 2017
The death toll has risen dramatically following what can only be described as a massacre Las Vegas. Authorities are saying that at least 58 people were killed and 518 people were injured after a gunman opened fire on a crowd of concert-goers across from the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. The attack is now being called the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.
In an update this morning (October 2nd), Vegas Police Sheriff Joe Lombardo says officers believe the suspected sole gunman, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, killed himself following the massacre. NBC News reports Paddock is a resident of Mesquite, Nevada, about 80 miles northeast of Las Vegas. Paddock was a licensed pilot and owned two planes. He also has a hunting license from Alaska. It's believed he was living in a retirement community in Mesquite. Authorities say a cache of weapons was found inside the hotel room where Paddock died. Lombardo said they believe a companion of the shooter named Marilou Danley was not involved and was out of the country. According to NBC News, Paddock used her ID to check into the hotel room.
President Trump called the largest mass shooting in the United States an "act of pure evil." Trump praised the quick actions of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department and first responders he said helped save the lives of so many. He said the speed with which they responded was miraculous and prevented an even greater loss of life.
Country artist Jason Aldean, who was performing when the shooting started is safe. He posted to Instagram saying that he was safe:
Tonight has been beyond horrific. I still dont know what to say but wanted to let everyone know that Me and my Crew are safe. My Thoughts and prayers go out to everyone involved tonight. It hurts my heart that this would happen to anyone who was just coming out to enjoy what should have been a fun night. #heartbroken #stopthehate
Many people captured the horrific and chaotic scene on social media as it unfolded.
WARNING: DISTURBING VIDEO
Las Vegas residents are starting to line up to donate blood following the mass shooting on the Strip. United Blood Services is calling for people to head to any one of its centers to donate blood. Officials with the organization say they are in need of donations.
Facebook has activated its crisis response page for people in Las Vegas. People are urged to check in as "safe" via Facebook to let loved ones know they are alive. Anyone in the area of the Las Vegas strip will see the check-in button once they log into the app on their smartphones.
Some flights at Las Vegas' McCarran International Airport are being delayed following the mass shooting. Airport officials say several flights have been diverted to other airports as a precaution. Flights are expected to be delayed until Monday evening.
President Trump reacted to the shooting on Twitter saying "My warmest condolences and sympathies to the victims and families of the terrible Las Vegas shooting. God bless you!"
Meanwhile, Mike Pence tweeted out this morning that he and his wife Karen are praying for the victims and offering their love. He also thanked the "courageous first responders for their acts of bravery."
Photos: Getty Images