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The gunman who killed at least 58 people and injured more than 500 at an outdoor Las Vegas concert Sunday fired hundreds of rounds from an automatic rifle within mere minutes — and from more than 1,000 feet away, reported New York Daily News (US).
Police have yet to determine how Stephen Paddock, 64, obtained his guns and ammo and loaded it all into the heavily secured Mandalay Bay hotel and casino. But the early details of the shooting show Paddock came prepared for mass murder from afar.
Police said Paddock, who was found dead in his 32nd-floor hotel room, had packed more than 10 rifles inside.
When Paddock started shooting at the Route 91 Harvest festival, near the Las Vegas Strip, he was firing from nearly 1,200 feet away.
Panicked videos from the scene show thousands of concertgoers scrambling for safety with no way of knowing where the hail of bullets came from.
The attack lasted about 10 minutes and Paddock fired at least several hundred shots, though the exact number has not been determined.
The shooting came in short, rapid and seemingly random bursts, with dozens of bullets flying at one time. An analysis of audio from the shooting determined that Paddock at one point fired approximately 280 rounds in 31 seconds.
Police have not said if Paddock had any kind of training that helped him shoot so many people from such distance.
Photos from the chaotic aftermath showed two separate windows on the 32nd floor busted open. Police said Paddock used a hammer-type tool to smash the window of his room, letting him shoot freely at the crowd.
Nothing is known yet about Paddock’s weapons or where he got them. Las Vegas police said he had no local criminal record.
Nevada has loose gun laws that give free reign for shooters to stock up on high-powered weapons.
Under state law, the sale of assault weapons and large capacity magazines are allowed, and there is no limit to how many firearms can be purchased at one time. Gun owners have no waiting period on their purchases and no requirement to register their guns.
Reporters and news commentators on Monday called for tougher gun control laws in the wake of the Sunday night shooting in Las Vegas, and criticized Congress for failing to pass legislation already, reported Washington Examiner (US).
MSNBC host Joy Reid tweeted, "This country refuses to be rational about guns, even in defense of our children's lives."
Liberal Washington Post blogger Paul Waldman remarked that he was "looking forward to hearing the NRA explain how if more people had guns at that concert then everything would have been OK."
"At least 50 dead in Las Vegas," Associated Press reporter Erica Werner wrote on Twitter. "Zero chance Congress will act on guns."
The shooting took place at an open-air country music concert when the gunman, identified by police as 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, opened fire on the crowd from the 32nd floor of the nearby Mandalay Bay hotel. Paddock apparently shot himself after what is being called the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.
Paddock's hotel room reportedly contained at least 10 guns.
A Newsweek article published Monday said Nevada is likely to "come under renewed scrutiny" due to having "some of the most-relaxed gun laws in the country."
The left-leaning website Vox used the incident as an example of how "firearm ownership contributes to America's murder problem." Vox said gun ownership "doesn't translate directly to more homicides," but said the proliferation of guns in the U.S. is a clear problem "when you compare the United States with nations like Britain and Japan."
Shaun King, a liberal columnist for the Intercept news site, said on Twitter that, "The United States is the ONLY country in the world that has more guns than people. The sheer math guarantees that this will happen."
Gun control resurfaces in the national debate each time there is a mass shooting, with Democrats proposing more laws restricting access to firearms and Republicans usually opposing their efforts.
But even many Democrats are hesitant to pass legislation to restrict access to guns. In 2013, then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., famously pulled consideration of a gun bill, and said the Senate needed to take a "pause" on the legislation. Reid said the Senate would return to the bill, but never did.
Before he opened fire late Sunday – killing at least 50 people at a country music festival on the Las Vegas Strip – the gunman Stephen Paddock lived a quiet life for years in a small town outside Las Vegas, reported TwinCities (US).
A retired man, Paddock, 64, would disappear for days at a time, frequenting casinos as a professional gambler with his longtime girlfriend, neighbors said. Relatives also said Paddock had been quietly living out his retirement years, visiting Las Vegas to gamble and take in concerts.
“We know nothing. If you told me an asteroid fell it would mean the same to me. There’s absolutely no sense, no reason he did this,” said his brother Eric Paddock. “He’s just a guy who played video poker and took cruises and ate burritos at Taco Bell. There’s no political affiliation that we know of. There’s no religious affiliation that we know of.”
In a brief interview Monday morning outside his home in Orlando, Eric Paddock said the FBI were inside interviewing family at the moment.
For several years, the gunman lived with his girlfriend, Marilou Danley, in a retirement community in Reno, Nevada, neighbors said. They said they interacted with Danley but not Paddock, whom they described as extremely standoffish. Danley told residents there that Paddock was a professional gambler, explaining their long absences from the neighborhood.
Paddock’s family said there was nothing in his past that would suggest violence. Family members said that Paddock spent much of his retirement in recent years staying in hotels in Las Vegas and gambling. They said he listened to country music and went to concerts at Vegas hotels, similar to the one Sunday night where he opened fire on a crowd of concertgoers.
Public records show Paddock was a licensed pilot who owned two planes. And he had a hunting license from Alaska.
“We are in complete shock, bewilderment and horror. We have absolutely no idea how in the world Steve did this. Absolutely no concept,” said one relative, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to avoid hurting other relatives. “There was nothing secret or strange about him.”
show source http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/vegas-shooting-happened-100s-shots-1-200-feet-article-1.3536512 http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/media-push-for-gun-control-after-las-vegas-shooting/article/2636273 http://www.twincities.com/2017/10