Sunday, November 28, 2021

Las Vegas gunman’s girlfriend unaware of shooting plan

Las Vegas, Oct 5 (IANS) The girlfriend of Stephen Paddock, the Las Vegas gunman who killed 59 people, said she saw no signs that he was planning “something horrible” and was “devastated” by the gruesome attack.

In her first public statement since the Las Vegas massacre on Sunday night, Marilou Danley, 62, on Wednesday said Paddock, a retired 64-year-old accountant, had sent her on a trip to the Philippines and wired her money there but she was unaware of any attack, reports The New York Times.

Danley said Paddock “never said anything to me, or took any action that I was aware of, that I understood in any way to be a warning that something horrible like this was going to happen.

“It never occurred to me in any way whatsoever that he was planning violence against anyone,” she said in the statement.

Her attorney Matt Lombard said Danley was fully cooperating with the investigation into why Paddock fired for nine to 11 minutes from the 32nd floor of Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino into a crowd of 22,000 concert-goers in the heart of Las Vegas, reports CNN.

Paddock took his own life as police closed in. Besides the casualties, a total of 489 people were injured in the attack and 317 have been released from hospitals.

Investigators are yet to discover Paddock’s motive for the shooting.

“I knew Stephen Paddock as a kind, caring, quiet man,” Danley said. “I loved him and hoped for a quiet future together with him.”

While she was in the Philippines, Danley said, Paddock wired her money that he said was for her to buy a house for her and her family, CNN reported.

Danley said she was grateful but worried that the unexpected trip home and the money “was a way of breaking up with me”.

Danley said she had voluntarily flown back to the US because she knew investigators wanted to talk to her.

She arrived late Tuesday at the Los Angeles International Airport from the Philippines.

Danley lived with Paddock in Mesquite, Nevada, northeast of Las Vegas.

Investigators at the hotel from which Paddock launched his assault found no fewer than 23 guns, including a Kalashnikov and AR-15 assault rifles, and a vast stockpile of military grade .223 calibre ammunition. In total, across three locations, 47 firearms were recovered.

Pictures emerged from the hotel room showing Paddock lying dead, surrounded by weapons and spent ammunition. Police said they believed he had used 10 suitcases to smuggle the weapons up to the room.

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