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Monday, 2 October 2017

[Update] Las Vegas shooting: death toll rises to 58 as police name suspect


At least 58 people have been killed and hundreds injured in a mass shooting at a Las Vegas concert.

A gunman, named as 64-year-old Nevada resident Stephen Paddock, opened fire from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel towards an open-air music festival attended by 22,000.

He killed himself as police stormed the room where 10 guns were found.

Investigators have found no link to international terrorism, despite a claim from so-called Islamic State.

In an address from the White House, President Donald Trump described the attack as "pure evil".

He praised the efforts of the emergency services, saying their "miraculous" speed saved lives, and announced he would be visiting Las Vegas on Wednesday.

The final shows of the three-day Route 91 country music festival were in full swing when the gunman struck.

Thousands were enjoying a performance by top-billing singer Jason Aldean when the first of several bursts of automatic gunfire rang out - hundreds of shots, witnesses say. That was late on Monday night - 22:08 local time (05:08 GMT on Monday).

Hundreds of concert-goers scrambled for cover, flattening themselves against the ground, rushing for the exits or helping others to escape as Paddock sprayed the site from his high vantage point.

"One man had blood all over him and that's when I knew something was seriously wrong," Mike Thompson from London, told the BBC.

"People were running and there was chaos."
Concert-goer Mike McGarry, who survived, told Reuters he lay on top of his children when the shots rang out.

"They're 20, I'm 53. I lived a good life," he said.

Many hotels on the Las Vegas strip close to the scene were placed on police lockdown and parts of Las Vegas Boulevard were shut.

Aldean, who was rushed off-stage, shared his reaction on Instagramm.
"Tonight has been beyond horrific," he wrote.

Las Vegas police say the number of people injured stands at 515.

Stephen Paddock (facebook)
Stephen Paddock, from a community of senior citizens in the small town of Mesquite north-east of Las Vegas, booked into the hotel on 28 September, police say.

His motives for carrying out the deadliest mass shooting in recent US history remain a mystery. Some investigators have suggested psychological issues, but there is no confirmation of this.

His brother, Eric, is dumbfounded that he acted this way.

Source: BBC News

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