Las Vegas massacre was America’s deadliest
From a hotel room on Sunday night, a gunman unleashed bullets, through an automatic weapon, on Route 91 Harvest Festival attendees in Las Vegas. More than 50 people died. Heavy estimated that 406 people were injured in this Vegas Strip massacre. Officials identified Stephen Paddock, a white man of 64, as the gunman who shot, killed and injured masses of attendees at the three-day country music festival in what should be broadly described as an act of domestic terror.
By Monday morning, the Las Vegas Review Journal reported that Paddock “died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel.” The publication also reported that officials found 10 rifles in Paddock’s hotel room.
The New York Times reported that officials sought, and achieved, location of Marilou Danley – a woman identified as Paddock’s companion. The publication also reported that video footage of the massacre included “nine seconds of rapid-fire, continuous bursts, followed by 37 seconds of silence from the weapon amid panicked screaming. The barrage of gunfire then erupted again in at least two more rounds, both shorter than the first.”
Early reports describe Paddock as a lone wolf without ties to terrorism. This description inspired online discussion, and will trickle offline, about how when white men commit atrocities like mass shootings, they are often portrayed as bad apples. When Brown and/or Black men commit atrocities, both law enforcement and mainstream media often paint the men as intrinsically and culturally tied to illicit networks.
Sunday night’s mass shooting (by a single shooter) included more casualties and injuries than last summer’s Pulse Nightclub mass shooting in Orlando, which was then the deadliest in American history.