Las Vegas, NV — Newly released surveillance footage from Las Vegas’ Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino shows that Stephen Paddock, the man who committed the worst mass shooting in modern American history, acted completely normal in the days leading up to the event.
The footage, obtained by the New York Times and published Thursday, depicts the same unassuming loner hotel staff had come to know. Paddock, who lived just an hour away in Mesquite, Nevada, was a regular at Mandalay Bay.
Over the course of several days prior to the shooting on October 1, Paddock is seen playing video poker in the casino, buying snacks at a newstand, eating sushi at a restaurant, chatting with staff, and quietly riding in elevators, among other mundanities.
But the footage also shows a man carrying out steps in a methodical plan to commit a massacre — a plan that used Mandalay Bay employees as unwitting accomplices.
Multiple times, Paddock leaves the resort and travels to his home in Mesquite, only to return with more and more bags. With no way of knowing they were transporting the guns and ammunition that would soon cause 58 deaths and more than 800 injuries, the bellhops carry the bags up to the killer’s 32nd floor suite.
After checking into Mandalay Bay on September 25, Paddock was able to nonchalantly move at least 21 suitcases, including two smaller bags, a laptop bag, and a white container up to his killing perch. Contained in that cargo were 23 guns and thousands of rounds of ammunition.
Following his assault on the concert-goers at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival, Steven Paddock took his own life. While the new footage grants better insight into the man’s actions, it still doesn’t speak to the most important question: his motive, which remains unknown.
In a statement, MGM Resorts, the parent company of Mandalay Bay, said the surveillance footage was released “in the interest of providing greater context around Stephen Paddock’s actions in the days leading up to October 1.”
MGM also wants it known that there was no way to predict such a tragedy was coming:
“As the security footage demonstrates, Stephen Paddock gave no indication of what he planned to do and his interactions with staff and overall behavior were all normal. MGM and Mandalay Bay could not reasonably foresee that a long-time guest with no known history of threats or violence and behaving in a manner that appeared outwardly normal, would carry out such an inexplicably evil, violent and deadly act.”
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