It was a Sunday night on October 1st, 2017 at 10:05pm that during a country music festival, Stephen Paddock opened fire from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort, killing 58 and injuring 489. His own death bringing the death count to 59.
This marks the deadliest mass shooting in United States history. Horribly tragic for all those lost, injured, and whose friends and family were harmed by the shooter. It is truly an evil act.
The motive is still a mystery even a week after the shooting. Law enforcement, the press, and common people alike are scrambling, attempting to find the truth about what happened that night. Some drawing their own conclusions based on their politics, while others wait for the evidence to come out. We already see many reactions and responses surfacing that are clearly painting an agenda, like with many Democrats, pundits, talk show hosts and RINO’s (Republicans In Name Only) rampaging for gun control and a neutering of the NRA (National Rifle Association).
Hillary Clinton herself seemingly blaming the NRA for the mass shooting, which is absolutely ridiculous as any sane person would acknowledge. Usually, when politicians and Democrats refer to the NRA as a problem, they don’t really mean the NRA, they’re talking about millions of law-abiding gun owners. Regardless, murder is illegal, thus violent criminals obviously don’t care about regulations on bump stocks.
There are many theories regarding the nature, evidence, and purpose of the shooting. The Islamic State has claimed that Stephen Paddock had converted to Islam and committed the awful act in their name. There does not seem to be any more evidence for this than ISIS’ statement itself, it’s there, but is not itself damning evidence of causality. Clark County Sheriff Joseph Lombardo has stated that Paddock had been living a secret life and has spent decades acquiring firearms, and has yet to determine whether he was being radicalized during this time. While it was previously reported that Paddock had ammonium nitrate, a chemical compound used in homemade bombs, in his parked car, it was also discovered that he had 50 pounds of Tannerite, another explosive chemical, the reason for this still remains unknown.
The number of legal firearms connected to Paddock was a total of 47. 12 of those weapons had bump stocks, and he purchased 33 of those between October of last year and the shooting.
In the interview with Stephen Paddock’s brother, Eric, he stated that Stephen was very intelligent, and was highly successful, a numbers guy, very analytical and an avid gambler. This explains why the shooting was so carefully planned and that Paddock even had a plan to escape, which investigations have recently uncovered.
Of course, there are plenty of convincing theories, unconvincing speculations, some made by assumption and others make a case that it was politically motivated or a false flag. Many people believe there is another shooter, or that Paddock is a ‘patsy’ for this horrific crime. There are some videos surfacing on social media that show other gunmen.
Interesting as these are, they are not added to the official story because of lack of attention or evidence. Although recently, Sheriff Joe Lombardo questions if Paddock did this all on his own, citing the amount of weapons, the mass of the explosive material and the planning itself. So even the Sheriff himself believes that there could be more to the story than just Stephen Paddock, a successful, gambler, pilot, intellectual, tempered man who could plan the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. History.
From what we know so far, and the recent questioning of Stephen Paddock’s girlfriend, Marilou Danley, a Filipino woman who has been a lifelong partner of Paddock’s. In her statement to investigators, she says that this is as surprising to her as it is to everyone else and that she had no idea. The fact that Paddock wired 100,000$ to Danley a week before the shooting is quite suspicious, but Marilou seems to have nothing to do with Paddock’s actions and the money was nothing more than a parting gift for her to go to the Philippines, whilst he went to Las Vegas. Lastly, there is the psychological side of things, Paddock was smart yet an ill-tempered man who was allergic to many things, even to where his girlfriend could not wear perfumes around him. Successful, yes, but seemingly erratic in his behavior. Paddock is also reported to have been prescribed ‘diazepam’, or better known by its brand name: Valium. It is a common medication used to treat anxiety, which Paddock seemed to have plenty of. It is speculated that Paddock was a “pill popping insane” gunman, or more noteworthy, that he experienced all the wrong side effects of the drug he was taking and that eventually led to his mental degradation.
Finally, all we can draw from this is putting the evidence and speculation aside, Stephen Paddock is emulating the psychotic attitude of his own father. Benjamin Hoskins Paddock, a bank robber and con man who managed to make it on the FBI’s Most Wanted List from 1969-1977 because of his escape from prison in 1968. Stephen’s mother, Dolores had four children with this man. What kind of a life do you think that led for Stephen and his siblings? We all know the plight of single motherhood on society, but who knows how horrendous this became. Eric Paddock, Stephen’s brother said himself that they were “bad kids” that it was “very tough on their mother” and sure, there are plenty of us who have made fine for ourselves despite our pasts and our upbringings, but one question perplexes us all, what happened to Stephen Paddock? Why did he do this? If he did it alone that is. Still many unanswered questions.