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Before Las Vegas shooting, gunman was settling into retirement

By Reuters - Oct 02,2017 - Last updated at Oct 02,2017

People scramble for shelter at the Route 91 Harvest country music festival after apparent gun fire was heard on Sunday in Las Vegas, Nevada (AFP photo)

At first glance, it seemed Stephen Paddock, 64, was set for a quiet life in a desert retirement community near his beloved casinos where he bought a new home in 2015.

From there it was only an hour’s drive to Las Vegas, where he would embark on the worst mass shooting in recent US history. 

Public records point to an itinerant existence across the American West: A few years in coastal California, a few years in other parts of Nevada. Paddock had a hunting licence in Texas, where he lived for at least a few years. He got his pilot licence, and had at least one single-engine aircraft registered in his name.

In early 2015, he bought a modest two-storey home in a new housing development for retirees on the dusty edge of Mesquite, a small desert town popular with golfers and gamblers that straddles the Nevada border with Arizona. 

“It’s a nice, clean home and nothing out of the ordinary,” Quinn Averett, a Mesquite police department spokesman, told reporters on Monday. Some guns and ammunition were found inside, though nothing remarkable in a region where gun ownership is high. 

An hour’s drive southwest is Las Vegas, where Paddock would check into a 32nd-floor room last Thursday at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino with at least 10 rifles for a shooting spree that would kill least 58 people and hurt more than 500.

Eric Paddock, the shooter’s brother, said the family was “bewildered” as to what drove him to mass murder, saying in a telephone interview the family would release a brief statement through the sheriff’s office in Orlando, Florida, where some of the shooter’s relatives live.

He helped his brother move to escape Central Florida’s humidity to Nevada in order to be able to play more video poker two years ago, Eric Paddock told the Orlando Sentinel. The two were last in touch a few weeks ago, texting about power outages after Hurricane Irma hit Florida. 

A former neighbour named Sharon Judy in Viera, Florida, told the newspaper that Stephen Paddock was a friendly man who had described himself as a professional gambler. He showed Judy a picture of him winning a $20,000 slot-machine jackpot, she said.

Paddock had no criminal record other than a traffic infraction, authorities said.

Before moving to Mesquite, Nevada, he lived in another town called Mesquite in Texas. He was listed as the manager of an apartment complex called Central Park. A woman who answered the telephone for the complex referred questions to another manager, who did not respond to messages. 

Records as recently as 2015 list Paddock as single. Police and public records said he lived with Marilou Danley in the Nevada retirement community. Danley described herself as a “casinos professional”, as well as a mother and grandmother on social media websites. 

 

She was travelling outside the country, and police say she had no connection with the attack, CNN reported.

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The law enforcement agencies found no evidence to support DAESH claim of responsibility and Paddock had no ties to any of the terror groups, all this together in addition to his family criminal history , his father was a serial bank robber refute DAESH previous claims of responsibilities for a series of terror attacks . DAESH who has been fighting an international strong ally for years without conceding defeat or being annihilated as we have been promised by former and current US presidents , and its possession of sophisticated weapons and everlasting ammunitions to withstand all these years , is a mysterious secret only God and the White House know it. It is time for the American Administration to publicly admitted this group is its spoiled daughter and apologize to the bereaved families of tens of thousands killed by this terrorist group in the name of Islam . I wish if any of the Arab Leaders has the courage to confront Trump tell him to leave the region and let us sort out our problems by ourselves .The American presence in the region for the last decades yield nothing but Terrorism , instability , chaos and money looting . I hope DAESH will not cut out my tongue for using the Word DAESH .

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