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  World   Americas  04 Oct 2017  Vegas shooter a millionaire, loved guns, high-stakes poker

Vegas shooter a millionaire, loved guns, high-stakes poker

Published : Oct 4, 2017, 2:07 am IST
Updated : Oct 4, 2017, 2:07 am IST

Cops struggle to find motive for deadly attack.

Stephen Paddock
 Stephen Paddock

Mesquite: Nothing in Stephen Paddock’s life — to the extent that is known till now — offers any clue as to why he would show up at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino with at least 10 suitcases filled with guns and open fire from his 32nd floor suite on a country music festival, killing 59 people and injuring nearly 530.

As America grapples with the deadliest mass shooting in its history, officials are reacting cautiously to an ISIS claim that Paddock, 64, had carried out Sunday night’s massacre on behalf of the jihadist group.

Police said Paddock, who had no criminal record, smashed windows in his hotel room shortly after 10 pm on Sunday and trained bursts of automatic weapons fire on thousands of people attending the concert down below. He killed himself in the hotel room before authorities arrived.

Paddock, a one-time accountant, had a penchant for guns, high-limit video poker and real estate deals. A multimillionaire, he had a recent live-in girlfriend and two ex-wives and seemed to live a comfortable life in a Nevada retirement community.

On the surface, Paddock didn’t seem like a typical mass murderer, said Clint Van Zandt, a former FBI hostage negotiator and supervisor in the bureau’s behavioural science unit. Paddock was not known to be suffering from mental illness.

“My challenge is, I don’t see any of the classic indicators, so far, that would suggest, ‘OK, he’s on the road either to suicide or homicide or both,” Mr Van Zandt said.     — Agencies

Tags: las vegas shooting, stephen paddock