Las Vegas gunman Stephen Paddock rented two rooms facing different directions in the Mandalay Bay hotel, where he fired at a crowd of 22,000 concertgoers Sunday night, killing at least 58 people and injuring more than 500.
Paddock rented one room facing north and another facing east, Clark County Commission Chairman Steve Sisolak said during a briefing. The hotel's website allows guests to choose "premium view" rooms when they book a stay. Paddock was on the fourth day of his stay. He had visited the hotel twice before and was using his girlfriend’s slot-machine card in the hotel’s casino. (She was in the Philippines during the shooting.)
After breaking the window of his room on the 32nd floor (likely with a hammer, police said), Paddock fired hundreds of shots which witnesses said sounded like machine-gun fire. The smoke from his shots set off a smoke alarm and alerted police to his location.
Police have not yet publicly identified a motive for the gunman but said he had a history of gambling. Paddock was a retired accountant who had audited for Lockheed Martin and managed an apartment building in Nevada. He once filed a lawsuit against a Las Vegas casino that was later dismissed. Eric Paddock, his brother, said the gunman enjoyed playing $100-a-hand poker.
Darrel Stephens, executive director of the Major City Chiefs Association, which represents sheriffs and chiefs of police in major cities across the U.S., told Newsweek that Paddock “likely had those [guns] concealed in some way, more than likely in luggage.” Rifles are “easy to disassemble,” he said, and the huge hotel constantly sees people coming and going with luggage.
Stephens has been in contact with Las Vegas police, whom he called “well trained and well prepared,” and said their next steps would likely be poring over the extensive video footage of the area and processing the “enormous crime scene.”