Las Vegas concert shooting leaves at least 50 people dead

In the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history, a 64-year-old man mowed down people enjoying a concert

By Matthew Rozsa

Staff Writer

Published October 2, 2017 7:51AM (EDT)

 (AP Photo/John Locher)
(AP Photo/John Locher)

At least 50 people have died, and more than 200 have been injured, after a 64-year-old man fired shots into a crowded country music festival. A motive is not yet known.

The shooting occurred on late Sunday near the end of a set by country music star Jason Aldean, part of the three-day Route 91 Harvest country music festival performance held across the Las Vegas Boulevard from the Mandalay Bay hotel. Police said that the shooter was apprehended from the 32nd floor of that hotel, which is where he died. Witnesses said that the gunfire appeared to be coming from an upper floor of the hotel.

The shooter was identified by Las Vegas police as Stephen Paddock, 64. Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) Sheriff Joseph Lombardo has told reporters that although his department has not completed its investigation into Paddock's background, which they hope will shed light on his motives, they have located a number of weapons in Paddock's Las Vegas hotel room.

"Right now we believe it’s a solo act, a lone wolf attacker. We are pretty confident there is no longer a threat," Lombardo said.

"Tonight has been beyond horrific. I still don't 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," Aldean wrote on his Instagram page.

By Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer at Salon. He received a Master's Degree in History from Rutgers-Newark in 2012 and was awarded a science journalism fellowship from the Metcalf Institute in 2022.

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