The man who killed at least 59 people and injured more than 515 at a Las Vegas concert was a 64-year-old white male with no criminal history, police have revealed.
Stephen Paddock, who lived close to the music festival in Las Vegas which was the focus of the slaughter, was named by police shortly after a SWAT team stormed a room in the Mandalay Bay Hotel.
The brother of Paddock, said he’s “completely dumbfounded” by the shooting at a country music concert Sunday night, the deadliest in modern U.S. history.
Motive remains unknown
Eric Paddock told the Orlando Sentinel newspaper that he can’t understand what happened.
The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack, saying the shooter had converted to Islam, but provided no evidence. Nevada authorities say they believe Stephen Paddock acted alone, and no motive was yet known.
US authorities believe he was acting alone and described it as a suspected “lone wolf” attack. “We have no idea what his belief system was,”
Las Vegas Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said. “Right now, we believe he was the sole aggressor and the scene is static.”
Paddock was unknown to federal authorities but has previously come to the attention of local police enforcement, NBC has reported. He is said to have had no known connections to terror groups and at this stage authorities are not treating the attack as a terrorist attack.
The attack was launched with shots being fired from the 32rd floor of Mandalay Bay Hotel, down at the thousands of people listening to an open air concert.
Footage posted on social media showed terrified concert fans crouching on the ground or fleeing for their lives as bullets were fired into the crowd. In a statement the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said: “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.
At least 58 people have been killed and 515 others injured - said Las Vegas Sheriff Joe Lombardo:
Who was Stephen Paddock?
Paddock owned a single-family home in Sun City Mesquite, a retirement community along the Nevada-Arizona border, Mesquite Police Chief Troy Tanner said.
He lived there with Marilou Danley, 62. Police say they don’t believe she was involved.
Paddock bought the one-story, three-bedroom home about 80 miles north of Las Vegas in 2015 for about $370,000 (£278,906), according to property records that list him as a single man.
Authorities in Texas say he lived in a Dallas suburb from 2009 to 2012. Public records indicate Paddock may have lived in Mesquite, Texas, for longer, but police Lt. Brian Parrish said his department’s review shows the approximately three-year period.
A preliminary review of police records don’t indicate that authorities had any contact with him but police are still investigating, Parrish said.
Margaret Huang, Amnesty International USA’s Executive Director, was adamant that more stringent gun control laws were required. She said:
“Our thoughts are with the victims of these attacks and the city of Las Vegas.
“But thoughts must be backed up with actions to protect people from this kind of violence. No one’s life should be threatened just by walking down the street, going to school or attending a concert.
“The US government must uphold its obligations under international law and address gun violence as the human rights crisis that it is.
“It is critical to reform the current patchwork of federal, state and local laws to ensure everyone’s safety and security.”
In 2013 Nevada’s Republican governor Brian Sandoval vetoed a gun background checks bill, stating that, although he approved of the bill’s aim, he felt it would infringe on people’s 2nd Amendment rights.
Additional reporting by Associated Press.