The number of fatalities at the Mandalay Bay massacre has risen to 59, with 527 casualties, as news sources uncover that Stephen Paddock was a $100 per hand video poker player who would spend between $10,000 & $30,000 gambling on the Strip.
The gunman responsible for the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history was a $100 per hand video poker player, according to a CNN interview with his brother.
The death toll has risen to 59, with 527 casualties, after Stephen Paddock, a 64-year-old retired accountant from Mesquite, Las Vegas, locked himself in a hotel room at the Mandalay Bay resort where he indiscriminately opened fire on the 32nd floor, before turning the gun on himself.
Eric Paddock told CNN reporters, “He was my brother, and it’s like an asteroid fell out of the sky,” as he tried to fathom why his sibling would carry out such an act of carnage.
Paddock lived in Mesquite, Nevada, a familiar home for retirees about 80-miles north of Las Vegas. He divorced 27-years ago after a marriage that lasted close to five years and was living with a partner at the time of the atrocity. He has no children.
There is a history of crime in the family.
Paddock’s father, Benjamin Hoskins Paddock, occupied the FBI’s Most Wanted List 1969 – 1977 after escaping from prison where he was serving time in connection with armed robbery. Law enforcement officials captured him in 1977. According to Eric Paddock, his father died a few years ago.
Eric confirmed that to the best of his knowledge, his brother had no affiliations with any terror or hate groups. He was a wealthy man who owned property and liked to play video poker on cruise ships for $100 a hand. NBC News reported that Paddock would gamble between $10,000 and $30,000 a day in the casinos along the Strip.
A search of Paddock’s Mesquite home revealed more weapons and ammunition. Investigators believe Paddock purchased all of the weapons used in the massacre legally. He had been staying at the Mandalay Bay Resort since Thursday.
In an address to the nation, Donald Trump called for unity and prayer after an event he described as “an act of pure evil.” Trump will visit Las Vegas on Wednesday.
As these tragic events begin to sink in around the world, the inevitable questions will arise as to how someone can legally buy an arsenal of weapons and use them to snuff out so much beautiful life.
The LA Times reported that the only gun-related bill currently in the Washington sausage machine is one that relaxes the laws, making it easier for people to purchase silencers because they reduce potential hearing damage for hunters.
Speaking on MSNBC earlier today, the former New York Police Commissioner and Los Angeles Police Chief Bill Bratton said. “I’ve been a police officer for almost 50 years, and the lack of regulation in this country defies sanity.”
“He was just a guy,” said Eric Paddock.
A GoFundMe page has been established to raise funds to assist the victims of the shooting. At the time of writing, 23,233 people had raised $1.8m.