(ABC News) — The man suspected of gunning down 59 people from a perch high up in Las Vegas’ Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino had cameras set up inside and outside of his hotel room, authorities said today.
“I anticipate he was looking for anybody coming to take him into custody,” Clark County Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said today. Sources told ABC News the suspect utilized at least one camera outside the room possibly to monitor approaching police. Lombardo said there was a camera on a service cart in the hallway.
“FBI took all digital and electronic evidence into custody,” Lombardo added.
Police said Stephen Paddock, a 64-year-old resident of Mesquite, Nevada, opened fire on a music festival crowd from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, killing at least 59 people and injuring at least 527 others.
The gunfire sent more than 22,000 country music fans attending the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival across the street from Mandalay Bay scrambling for their lives. Some hid, some ran and others sprang into action, aiding the injured and helping people to safety.
Jason Aldean was the headliner of Sunday night’s concert; video showed him rushing off the stage amid the gunfire.
Lombardo said today, “We received the call at 10:08 p.m. The best of our estimates… he continued to fire … for approximately nine minutes.”
The Las Vegas Police Department said authorities responded to a room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel, where Paddock was found dead. Authorities said they believe Paddock killed himself prior to police entry.
As the nation mourns what has become the worst mass shooting in American history, authorities are working to piece together information about the suspected shooter for clues on what may have sparked the rampage.
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The motive behind the shooting remains unclear. “I can’t get into the mind of a psychopath,” Lombardo said at a news conference Monday.
Paddock is believed to have been solely responsible for the attack, according to police.
Lombardo said authorities are reviewing police body cameras.
“This individual was premeditated,” Lombardo said today. “I’m sure he evaluated everything he did in his actions, which is troublesome.”
“The world has changed. And, you know, who would have ever imagine this situation,” Lombardo said. “I couldn’t imagine it. And for this individual to take it upon himself to create this chaos and harm is unspeakable.”
‘How I did not get shot … I don’t know’
Jasmine Barbusca, a mother of two, told ABC News, “All you heard were just gunshots. And every time the gunshots would come down, you just start getting to the ground. And when they would stop, you get up and you just try to climb the fence again. We finally made it over. We were running through the parking lot; everybody just ran through the streets.”
She said she was thinking, “‘I got to get out, I’m going to be dead in five seconds.'”
“There were men going over their wives, their girlfriends, to block them,” she recalled. “Unfortunately, those men got shot, but I mean, there were lives saved.”
Barbusca said she saw one man as he helped many women climb the fence to escape.
“I don’t know who the man was, but there was a man who probably saved a good 20 women’s lives. He was really brave,” she said.
Tearing up, she said, “How I did not get shot … by the grace of God. I honestly … we ran. I don’t know.”
Arsenal found in shooter’s hotel suite
Paddock checked into the Mandalay Bay on Thursday, bringing with him at least 23 handguns and rifles, some with scopes, police said. Ammunition and more than 10 suitcases were found in the room, Lombardo said. Paddock is believed to have used multiple rifles in the attack, police said.
Authorities believe Paddock used a device similar to a hammer to smash the windows of his two-room suite.
A computer and several pieces of media were also recovered in Paddock’s hotel suite.
Room service was provided at some point during the suspect’s stay, Lombardo said today.
In addition to the weapons discovered at the hotel, authorities said they found 19 additional firearms and explosive material at his home in Mesquite.
Officials said five handguns and two shotguns were also found at the suspect’s home in Reno.
Police scour the suspect’s background
Officials said he had no criminal history, save for a minor citation.
“We checked the federal and local databases and state databases,” said Lombardo. “We had no knowledge of this individual.”
Eric Paddock, the suspect’s brother, told ABC News on Monday that the family was “dumbstruck” by the news of the attack.
“We have no idea how or why this happened,” Eric Paddock said. “As far as we know, Steve was perfectly fine.”
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He said his brother was not a man of strong political convictions.
“Steve had nothing to do with any political organization, religious organization, no white supremacist, nothing,” Eric Paddock said.
The suspect’s girlfriend, Filipino-born Marilou Danley, 62, lived with Stephen Paddock at his home in a Mesquite retirement community. Police say she was in Asia at the time of the shooting but is expected to return to the U.S. this week where authorities are eager to find out what, if anything, she knew about his plans.
Police said today the girlfriend is a “person of interest.”
Honoring the victims
Among the at least 59 killed was a special education teacher, a kindergarten teacher and a nurse from Tennessee who saved his wife’s life.
ABC News has confirmed the names of these 17 victims: Heather Alvarado, Denise Burditus, Carrie Barnette, Baily Schweitzer, Dorene Anderson, Neysa Tonks, Jennifer Parks, Chris Roybal, Hannah Ahlers, Jordan McIldoon, Angela Gomez, Lisa Romero, Rachael Parker, Susan Smith, Sonny Melton, Dana Gardner and Sandy Casey.
According to White House press secretary Sarah Sanders, Sonny Melton died shielding his wife, Dr. Heather Melton, who survived.
President Donald Trump on Monday called the shooting “an act of pure evil.”
Trump said he will visit Las Vegas on Wednesday to meet with law enforcement, first responders and victims’ families.
“In moments of tragedy and horror, America comes together as one,” Trump said.
He added, “In memory of the fallen, I have directed that our great flag be flown at half staff.”
Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval said at a news conference Monday, “I don’t know if I have words to describe what we are going through. … We are angry, we are grieving, we are confused. People are hurting.”
“To the people at the concert, you see courage and compassion there,” Sandoval said. “People helping total strangers. Risking their own lives to help people. That really speaks highly to the character of America. ”
Nevada Attorney General Adam Paul Laxalt said at a news conference, “When you see one of these men and women who are wearing a badge, tell them, ‘Thank you.’ Their selfless actions saved the lives of hundreds of people. Not a dozen, but hundreds of people. This death count would have been many hundred more were it not for [their] brave work.”
Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman, who held a vigil on steps of City Hall, said in a statement, “The act and insanity of a madman shall not define us or keep us from living whole and meaningful lives with pride in our shared humanity.”
Aldean wrote in an emotional Instagram post Monday night, “Over the last 24 hrs I have gone through lots of emotions. Scared, Anger, Heartache, Compassion and many others. I truely dont understand why a person would want to take the life of another. Something has changed in this country and in this world lately that is scary to see. This world is becoming the kind of place i am afraid to raise my children in. At the end of the day we arent Democrats or Republicans, Whites or Blacks, Men or Women. We are all humans and we are all Americans and its time to start acting like it and stand together as ONE! That is the only way we will ever get this Country to be better than it has ever been, but we have a long way to go and we have to start now. My heart aches for the Victims and their families of this Senseless act. I am so sorry for the hurt and pain everyone is feeling right now and there are no words i can say to to take that pain away. Just know u all are in my heart and my prayers as we all go through this together. Time to come together and stop the hate! #stopthehate #prayforlasvegas”