Vegas shooting hotel claims the police's version of Stephen Paddock's final moments is wrong
While the world continues to grapple with the aftermath of the Las Vegas shootings earlier this month, there is still new information trickling out detailing what happened. These details help to build a better idea of the exact events, in order to better understand and consequently prevent any such event from occurring again.
The massacre, carried out by a single gunman identified as 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, left 58 people dead and hundreds more injured. Paddock took to a hotel room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, smashed out the windows, and sprayed a crowd of festival goers at a country music festival below with bullets.
Police are still trying to figure out Paddock's motives, as well as exactly what happened on the 32nd floor. They're continuing to devise timelines outlining Paddock's movements in the hotel and pinpointing his actions to specific times, updating them as they learn more information.
However, in a new revelation, Mandalay Bay hotel staff are saying that police reports in the latest timeline may be inaccurate. It has been revealed that a wounded hotel security guard called hotel officials, telling them there was a gunman on the 32nd floor, alerting them before the massacre began. The information comes from an investigator who spoke to the Los Angeles Times on Tuesday.
According to the investigation, police only arrived at Paddock's room – where the guard called Jesus Campos had been shot in the leg– after the gunman had finished his 10-minute shooting spree.
The revelation that Campos alerted the hotel of the gunman before he started shooting from the window has raised a new question – why did it take so long for authorities to stop him?
The new information came after Las Vegas police changed their timeline of how the massacre started with the initial shooting of the security guard approximately six minutes before Paddock turned to festivalgoers. They just didn't include the fact that Campos called hotel staff after he was injured.
Clark County Assistant Sheriff Tom Roberts told The Times that Campos “called it in before” the attack began, possibly using a hallway phone to contact hotel staff. “He manually called down and he used his radio to call. … That’s what we were briefed this morning.”
The precise time Campos alerted staff about his own shooting is was unknown to Roberts, and he also wasn't sure whether the hotel immediately called the police to tell them about Campos' injury.
“We just don’t know how long it took him to call. He’s getting shot at, he’s running, he’s getting shot, he finds some cover, that’s when he starts calling in,” Roberts hypothesized.
In relation to this new information, a spokeswoman for Mandalay Bay disputed the latest timeline released by police, saying it "may not be accurate" in a statement. While it could just be that Campos' call to hotel staff was left out of the police report, the comments from the spokeswoman did not explain why they were apprehensive of the police report. The statement read:
"This remains an ongoing investigation with a lot of moving parts. As evidenced by law enforcement briefings over the past week, many facts are still unverified and continue to change as events are under review.
"We cannot be certain about the most recent timeline that has been communicated publicly and we believe what is currently being expressed may not be accurate.
"It is not appropriate for us to comment further at this time on what remains an open matter for law enforcement."
The mass shootings are said to have started at 10:05pm, with police arriving on the 32nd floor at 10:17, after Paddock ceased shooting at 10:15. He shot himself before police entered the room. There were no surveillance cameras in the hotel hallways.
However, Roberts said that figuring out the sequence of events in the hallway “has not been the priority for us.”
"Please remember this — our focus has been all along finding if there were other unknown subjects and trying to trace his steps and trying to do all these things," he said.
A revised timeline of the events is to be released on Friday.