Las Vegas terror attack becomes deadliest mass shooting in US history as death toll rises to 50
The latest reports have confirmed that more than 50 people have been killed and at least 200 injured in a terror attack which took place at an open-air country music festival in Las Vegas.
Scenes of horror were pictured at Las Vegas' famous strip as a gunman, who has been named as Stephen Paddock, a 64-year-old man from Mesquite, Nevada, opened fire from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino. The attacker who has been been described as a "lone-wolf" showered hundreds of round of ammunition from his automatic weapon onto throngs of revelers below.
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department has confirmed that Paddock was shot and killed by officers.
Around 40,000 concert goers were forced to duck for cover as rounds of shots rained down on them during the Route 91 Harvest Festival. The attack is believed to have begun at around 10:20pm local time on Sunday.
The shooting took place midway through a performance by country music singer, Jason Aldean. The 40-year-old performer released a statement on Instagram shortly after the events of the night, confirming that he and his crew were safe and offering his condolences to those affected:
"Tonight has been beyond horrific. I still dont 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."
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department have not yet provided a motive for the shooting, but Clark County sheriff Joe Lombardo has stated, "we have no idea what his belief system was. Right now, we believe he was the sole aggressor and the scene is static.”
Authorities have now found the woman they were seeking, Marilou Danley. Whilst enforcement failed to give details of whether they believe Danley was involved in the attack, they repeatedly described her as an "associate".
Speaking at the latest press conference, Lombardo said:
"We are confident but not 100% sure that we have located the female person of interest. I want the people to feel confident and calm that we have accomplished a lot in short period of time."
The death toll of at least 50 people makes this the deadliest mass shooting in US history. It closely surpasses the Orlando shooting which took place in June 2016 at Pulse nightclub, in which 49 people were killed.
Lombardo also confirmed that one Las Vegas police officer is among those dead, "One [or our officers] was critical but is stable and one of my officers was off duty attending the concert and lost his life," he asserted.
More details are to follow.