Wednesday 18 October 2017

Las Vegas shooter 'only used a third of his ammo before police found him' - says well-known Irish businessman

Well-known Irish businessman in Las Vegas said it was 'incredible' to see people's reaction in aftermath

A night time view of the scene of a mass shooting, bottom right, on the Las Vegas Strip, Monday, Oct. 2, 2017, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
A night time view of the scene of a mass shooting, bottom right, on the Las Vegas Strip, Monday, Oct. 2, 2017, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
A pair of cowboy boots is shown in the street outside the concert venue after a mass shooting at a music festival on the Las Vegas Strip in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S. October 1, 2017. REUTERS/Las Vegas Sun/Steve Marcus
U.S. President Donald Trump stands with first lady Melania Trump and Vice President Mike Pence during a moment of silence in the wake of the the mass shooting in Las Vegas at the White House in Washington, U.S., October 2, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Senior White House Advisor Ivanka Trump stands before a moment of silence in the wake of a mass shooting in Las Vegas at the White House in Washington, U.S., October 2, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
A view of houses in the Prominence community, where shooter Stephen Craig Paddock owned a home, in Mesquite, Nevada, U.S. October 2, 2017. REUTERS/Las Vegas Sun/Steve Marcus
Mesquite Police Sgt. Tracy Fails and members of a citizen volunteer patrol block the entrance to the Prominence community, where shooter Stephen Craig Paddock owned a home, in Mesquite, Nevada, U.S. October 2, 2017. REUTERS/Las Vegas Sun/Steve Marcus
Mesquite Police Sgt. Tracy Fails talks with another officer at the entrance to the Prominence community, where shooter Stephen Craig Paddock owned a home, in Mesquite, Nevada, U.S. October 2, 2017. REUTERS/Las Vegas Sun/Steve Marcus
U.S. President Donald Trump's daughter and advisor Ivanka Trump, White House National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster and senior advisor Jared Kushner talk as they await the start of a moment of silence ceremony in the wake of the the mass shooting in Las Vegas while standing outside the White House in Washington, U.S., October 2, 2017. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Denise Calnan

Denise Calnan

The Las Vegas shooter who killed 59 people and injured at least 515 "only used a third of his ammunition" before police breached his hotel room, a well-known Irish businessman said.

President of the Fremont Street Experience in Las Vegas, Patrick Hughes, said it was "incredible" to see the first reaction from people was to help each other after the shooter took aim at thousands enjoying a country music festival on the Las Vegas Strip on Sunday night.

Shooter Stephen Paddock (64) lived in Mesquite, Nevada, approximately 80 miles, from Las Vegas.

He killed himself before armed police blasted their way into his hotel room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel where he had an arsenal of weapons.

President of the Fremont Street Experience in Las Vegas Patrick Hughes (Photo: Fremont Street Experience)
President of the Fremont Street Experience in Las Vegas Patrick Hughes (Photo: Fremont Street Experience)

Relatives described Paddock as "just a guy who hung out", who was never in a hurry and who had retired to the Nevada desert to enjoy the dry climate and Las Vegas’ casinos.

Mr Hughes, who became president of the Fremont Street Experience in February 2016, said he could say with confidence Paddock had only used one-third of his available ammunition.

"I can tell you with a lot of confidence that he only went through a third of the ammo in the room... and this was the damage he caused," Mr Hughes told RTE Radio One's Morning Ireland.

He credited the people at the scene who used their initiative to get as many people as possible to the hospital.

"Victims were carried out on gates last night. People were donating their cars, doing everything possible to get them to hospitals, it was incredible to see.

"What was most incredible is that the natural reaction, the first reaction from people was to help.

"I've heard so many stories... I've heard of two local police officers, one of whom has died, he was protecting his wife, he just jumped on her.

"The other jumped on strangers who happened to be friends of mine. He got shot in the neck and is now in a critical condition."

People hug and cry outside the Thomas & Mack Center after a mass shooting at the Route 91 Harvest country music festival on October 2, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
People hug and cry outside the Thomas & Mack Center after a mass shooting at the Route 91 Harvest country music festival on October 2, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - OCTOBER 01: People tend to the wounded outside the festival ground after an apparent shooting on October 1, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. There are reports of an active shooter around the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. (Photo by David Becker/Getty Images)
A pair of cowboy boots is shown in the street outside the concert venue after a mass shooting at a music festival on the Las Vegas StripY
Police vehicles block a street corner after a deadly shooting at a music festival (AP Photo/Ronda Churchill)
A woman sits on a curb at the scene of a shooting outside of a music festival along the Las Vegas Strip
Blurred image of heavily armed police officers running
LAS VEGAS, NV - OCTOBER 01 People run from the Route 91 Harvest country music festival after apparent gun fire was heard on October 1, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. There are reports of an active shooter around the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. (Photo by David Becker/Getty Images)
People react at gunshots heard at music festival in Las Vegas, U.S., October 1, 2017 in this picture obtained from social media. @RTBLECKvia REUTERS THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. MANDATORY CREDIT.NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES
Police officers advise people to take cover near the scene of a shooting near the Mandalay Bay resort and casino on the Las Vegas Strip, Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Las Vegas Shooting
Las Vegas Shooting
Las Vegas Shooting

Mr Hughes credited the emergency services for their professionalism and said police officers woke up and came into work "in their civilian clothes, unshaven" once they heard the news.

"These guys are professionals," he said.

Stephen Paddock
Stephen Paddock

"For them to have neutralised the issue within 15 minutes of it starting is incredible."

Mr Hughes said tourists did wander the Fremont Street Experience last night, but the strip remained "eerily quiet".

He also said the city had recently made efforts to protect themselves from any vehicle attack, but said there is "no way" to defend against gun violence.

"There is no way to defend against something like this," Mr Hughes said.

"But we are always thinking about. I got to tell you, after the Barcelona incident, which is completely unrelated, but when I saw that area being the pedestrianised area, i immediately called the Mayor of Las Vegas and Met Police, and what we did immediately install concrete barriers at entrances of the Fremont Street Experience.

"We've had those in place to protect people against any vehicular incident, that was our immediate thought, the pedestrian area.

"The way gun laws are in this country, it's tough to defend.

"This could have happened anywhere, any place you can carry a gun and has a high-rise, unfortunately."

Mr Hughes said he does not believe the attack will make people think twice about visiting Las Vegas.

"I do believe we will, as a community in Vegas, we will be more vigilant and visible in our defences.

"This is what this city was built on, the entertainment industry, people come here to have fun.

"But you can't have fun if you don't feel safe.

"We'll be stronger going forward."

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