At around 10:15 local time Sunday night, country music star Jason Aldean was performing what was to be the final song of his set, and the final song of the three-day Route 91 Harvest Festival concert at an outdoor venue at Las Vegas’ Mandalay Bay Resort. Multiple videos are online that were recording the concert when what appears to be at least three sustained rounds of automatic gunfire rang out. As with all terror or mass casualty events, early reports can and often are correct, but as of this posting, the shots were fired from a hotel room window high up the Mandalay Bay tower overlooking the concert crowd. Some reports were the 20th floor, but that level of detail is not confirmed.
The Strip has been shut down, and hundreds of emergency vehicles – police, SWAT, fire and EMT swarmed the area. Initial casualty counts are two confirmed dead, at least 26 wounded. Those numbers will most certainly change. Police have said they believe there was only one shooter, and that shooter is down.
I implore everyone online, including on social media, to do four things.
- Do not add to the shock and horror, especially to those who are going to be waking up to news that their loved ones were either injured or killed attending a concert on a Sunday night.
- Please do the human thing here and not speculate wildly or link to stuff that’s not verified, or play politics with something like this. It’s ghoulish.
- Repeat step 1.
10/2 1:35AM PDT UPDATE: Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo is holding a press conference. The shooter fired from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay down onto the crowd. He is now deceased. He is a local Vegas resident. His name is being withheld. His residence is being gone through currently. He was allegedly with a female companion named Mari Lou Danley, who is 4′ 11″ and is of Asian descent. She is referred to as a roommate of the shooter, she is not in custody, and is most definitely wanted for questioning. There are two vehicles registered to the two involved, the at-large female and the deceased shooter that police are looking for. The casualty count, as tragically expected considering the eyewitness reports that have poured in, are at least 20 killed, including at least 2 off-duty police officers, and at least 100 people injured.
10/2 3:20AM PDT UPDATE: Pete Williams of NBC News has identified the shooter as 64 year old Stephen Paddock. No motive, no other information, other than he’s suspected to share the residence with the other person of interest, Marilou Danley.
10/2 3:40AM PDT UPDATE: It’s almost unfathomable to write this. Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo just updated the media in a press conference that the number of dead in the shooting has reached 50, and the number of injured is 200. It’s among, if not the, deadliest mass shooting in American history. Dear God.
10/2 3:54AM PDT UPDATE: Las Vegas authorities have said Marilou Danley, the woman/roommate of the shooter, is in custody. The room in which the shooter stayed in Vegas has been searched, and a number of weapons were recovered.
10/2 5:55AM PDT UPDATE: It just gets worse. Over 400 have been transported to hospitals with injuries related to the shooting at the concert last night.