Two days ago, Clark County Sheriff Lombardo for the first time expressed his conviction that Las Vegas gunman Stephen Paddock had to have help at some point during the tragic mass shooting, either in the preparation or the execution stage, or both.
“Look at this. You look at the weapon obtaining the different amounts of tannerite available, do you think this was all accomplished on his own, face value? You got to make the assumption he had to have help at some point, and we want to insure that’s the answer. Maybe he’s a super guy… Maybe he’s super — that was working out this out on his own, but it will be hard for me to believe that.”
“Here’s the reason why, put one and one–two and two together, another residence in Reno with firearms, okay, electronics and everything else associated with larger amounts of ammo, a place in Mesquite, we know he had a girlfriend. Do you think this is all self-facing individual without talking to somebody, it was sequestered amongst himself.”
— ABC News (@ABC) October 5, 2017
Additionally, Sheriff Lombardo suggested that far from a suicide mission, authorities had seen evidence that the shooter planned to survive and escape.
To be sure, the question whether Paddock was alone or coordinated with some, still unknown collaborator, has been one of the most hotly debated topics involving last Sunday’s tragic Las Vegas shooting.
Now, providing further impetus to the speculation that Paddock was not alone, NBC News reports, citing senior law enforcement officials, that investigators are speculating that someone else may have been in the Las Vegas gunman’s hotel room when he was registered there.
According to NBC, the investigators are “puzzled” by two discoveries: First, a charger was found that does not match any of the cellphones that belonged gunman, Stephen Paddock. And second, garage records show that during a period when Paddock’s car left the hotel garage, one of his key cards was used to get into his room. While there are several possible explanations for these anomalies, investigators said they “want to get to the bottom of it.”
It gets better: according to Paddock’s IRS records, the gunman was not only a legacy millionaire, he was a successful gambler, earning at least $5 million in 2015. Some of that could be from other investments, but most of it was from gambling, officials told NBC.
Separately, and this goes to Paddock’s potential ISIS links which the Islamic State has tripled down on over the past week, CNN reports that in addition to his frequent forays into casinos and gun shops, Las Paddock took 20 cruises, many of them in Europe and the Middle East. In addition to stops at ports in Spain, Italy, Greece, the cruises also stopped in Jordan and the United Arab Emirates, according to information provided by a law enforcement source. Paddock’s girlfriend, Marilou Danley, accompanied him on nine of the cruises.
Picking up on the narrative that Paddock may have hoped to use his car as a bomb, Paddock’s car, a 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Touring, was found in the hotel parking garage and contained 90 pounds of Tannerite and two suitcases filled with hundreds of rounds of ammunition. Authorities suspect the Tannerite was intended for use in target practice or to make the car explode if fired upon, according to information provided by the source. The information from the source was derived from intelligence obtained earlier this week. Authorities have since said that the vehicle contained 50 pounds of Tannerite.
That said, so far, investigators have found no evidence supporting a claim by ISIS that Paddock had converted to Islam and carried out the attack on the terror group’s behalf, according to the information provided by the source. Paddock’s girlfriend, Danley, has been unable to provide a motive for the mass killing, according to the information.
Finally, in the latest previously undisclosed discovery, the NYT reported that what some had assumed was a suicide note, was instead a notepad whose exact contents the authorities have yet to reveal. Sheriff Lombardo said that it contained numbers that were being analyzed for their relevance, and were “significant to the gunman”; the police are attempting to determine their meaning.
Paddock’s motive for the worst mass shooting in US history still remains a mystery.