Las Vegas sheriff: Mass killer likely had 'some help at some point'

Jake Baker  ·  October 05, 2017  ·  Featured, U.S. News, Crime and justice, Culture

The Las Vegas gunman likely had "some help at some point" in pulling off Sunday's massacre, the head of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department asserted Wednesday.

It was only logical to "make the assumption," Clark County, Nev., Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said.

As evidence, Lombardo pointed to gunman Stephen Paddock's huge arsenal, explosive materials found in his car and his meticulous planning.

"What we know is Stephen Paddock is a man who spent decades acquiring weapons and ammo and living a secret life, much of which will never be fully understood," the sheriff said.

Lombardo's remarks came three days after Paddock fired bullets from his room on the 32 nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino into a country music concert audience. He killed 58 people and injured hundreds.

Authorities were still searching for a motive.

Paddock led such a low-key, private life that no one seemed to know him well, and those who did had no sense he was capable of the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history.

Where other mass killers have left behind a trail of plain-sight clues that help investigators quickly understand what drove them to violence, Paddock, 64, had nearly no close friends, social media presence or other clear connections to the broader world.

Even the No. 2 official in the FBI said Wednesday he was surprised investigators have not uncovered more about why a man with no obvious criminal record would cause so much bloodshed.

"There's all kinds of things that surprise us in each one of these events. That's the one in this one, and we are not there yet," FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe said. "We have a lot of work to do."

They wonder if he had some sort of mental break at the time that drove him to start making plans for mass murder.

They also know he rented an apartment in a Las Vegas high-rise over another music festival the weekend before the massacre, though not why.

Lombardo also confirmed Wednesday that Paddock planned to escape after the shooting but did not go into what evidence led to that conclusion.

Authorities were looking for hints in those details of the kind of life he lived, and the kind of victims and venue he targeted, said David Gomez, a former FBI national security and criminal profiler.

"We may never know to 100 percent certainty," he said. "But they will find out."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Shooting, Las Vegas, Massacre, Mass Murder, Massacre , Stephen Paddock, Clark COunty, Accomplice

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