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On October 1, 2017, over 22,000 people came together to enjoy a country music festival in Las Vegas, Nevada. On the third and final night of the festival, a lone gunman opened fire into the crowd from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. The gunfire continued for over ten minutes, resulting in the deaths of 58 innocent concert goers and injuring more than 700. With law enforcement closing in, the suspect took his own life.
It is not standard practice for the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) to issue an investigative overview related to an open case. Due to the magnitude of this investigative response and the number of victims associated with this incident, Sheriff Joseph Lombardo felt it was important to author an overview of all investigative work accomplished in the aftermath of 1 October. This report is not intended to be a comprehensive and final account of the facts and evidence gathered but rather an overview of the investigation. The investigation into this incident is on-going and a full comprehensive report will be released upon its completion.
This report will reflect the number and identities of victims known to the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department to date. This information is vital in order to grant assistance, properly categorize the level of crime and most importantly, honor those who fell prey to this horrific act of violence.
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department would like to recognize and thank all our local, state and federal law enforcement partners for their assistance with this investigation.
On October 1, 2017, at approximately 2118 hours, Mandalay Bay Security Officer Jesus Campos was assigned to check several Hotel Service Optimization System (HotSOS)1 alarms from various rooms inside the hotel. Room 32-129 was the last of the rooms Security Officer Campos was assigned to check.
Security Officer Campos was on the 30th floor and responded to the 32nd floor via the stairwell in the north end of the 100 wing. Security Officer Campos attempted to enter the hallway to the 100 wing but the door would not open. He took the stairs to the 33rd floor and used the guest elevator to access the 32nd floor. Once on the 32nd floor, Security Officer Campos entered the foyer leading to the stairwell. He discovered an “L” bracket screwed into the door and door frame which prevented it from opening. Security Officer Campos called his dispatch center with the house phone located in the foyer to report the discovery. The security dispatch center then called the engineering section to have the door checked.
Security Officer Campos heard what he described as a rapid drilling sound coming from room 32-135 after he hung up the phone. As he walked down the 100 wing hallway, Campos heard what he described as automatic gunfire coming from the area of room 32-135 and realized he had been shot in the left calf. He took cover in the alcove of rooms 32-122 and 32-124 and utilized both his cellular phone and radio to notify his dispatch he was shot. Security Officer Campos advised he was shot with a BB or pellet gun. While waiting for other security personnel to arrive Security Officer Campos continued to hear gunfire coming from the room.
Engineer Stephen Schuck finished fixing a leak in room 62-207 when he was directed to respond to the 32nd floor reference the bracket preventing the stairwell door from opening. Engineer Schuck used the service elevator in the 200 wing to access the 32nd floor. When he arrived on the 32nd floor, he gathered his tools and equipment and walked from the 200 wing to the 100 wing.
As Engineer Schuck walked up the hallway of the 100 wing, he observed Security Officer Campos poke his head out of an alcove. Engineer Schuck then heard rapid gunfire coming from the end of the 100 hallway which lasted approximately 10 seconds. When the gunfire stopped, he heard Security Officer Campos tell him to take cover. Engineer Schuck stepped into an alcove and gunfire again erupted down the hallway coming from room 32-135. The gunfire lasted a few seconds then stopped. The gunfire started again after a brief pause but Engineer Schuck believed it was directed outside and not down the hallway.
Inside the Las Vegas Village over fifty LVMPD personnel were on overtime assignments for the Route 91 Harvest Festival. The initial gunshots were heard on an officer’s Body Worn Camera (BWC). Officers and concertgoers initially believed the gunfire to be fireworks. As Paddock targeted the concertgoers with gunfire, officers quickly determined they were dealing with an active shooter and broadcast the information over the radio.
The crowd inside the Las Vegas Village started reacting to the gunfire and Jason Aldean ran off the stage. Officers and concertgoers began treating victims who were struck by gunfire. They also tried to get concertgoers out of the venue in a safe manner. Officers determined the gunfire was coming from an elevated position, possibly from the Mandalay Bay Hotel. Medical personnel were requested for multiple people struck by gunfire.
As the active shooter incident was occurring, two LVMPD officers were in the security office of the Mandalay Bay handling a call for service reference two females who were in custody for trespassing. The officers heard the radio broadcast of gunfire at the Route 91 Harvest Festival. Both officers, along with security personnel, exited the security office and responded towards the Las Vegas Village. As they were making their way through the casino, security personnel advised the officers of an active shooter on the 32nd floor of the hotel. The officers then directed security to escort them to that location. The officers and security personnel entered the Center Core guest elevators and were again advised the shooter was on the 32nd floor. The officers made a tactical deciscion to respond to the 31st floor and take the stairwell to the 32nd floor.
LVMPD officers converged on the Las Vegas Village and Mandalay Bay. Officers formed multiple Strike Teams and entered the Mandalay Bay from various entrance points. A team of officers including a Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Operator reached the 32nd floor via the stairwell in the 100 wing. Officers did not hear gunfire coming from room 32-135. Officers were able to manually breach the “L” bracket on the stairwell door and gain access to the hallway. Officers immediately observed a food service cart which had wires running from it to room 32-134 and prepared themselves for the possibility of an Improvised Explosive Device (IED). The decision was made to use an explosive breach to make entry into room 32-135.
After a successful breach of the doors to room 32-135, officers entered the room and found Paddock deceased on the floor. Paddock appeared to have a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. Officers cleared the remainder of the room and observed multiple rifles in various locations throughout the room as well as hundreds of expended casings. A second explosive breach was utilized to gain access to room 32-134 through the connecting doors. Immediately after the breach a SWAT officer negligently discharged his rifle. Officers cleared room 32-134 finding several rifles in the room.
Officers, medical personnel, and concertgoers continued the evacuation of victims in the Las Vegas Village venue. Several triage sites were established in the venue and surrounding area. Injuries ranged from being minor in nature to fatal. Hundreds of wounded were transported to area hospitals by ambulance and privately owned citizen vehicles.