The final report by LVMPD on the October 1 Mandalay Bay mass shooting is out. This marks the general end of the local investigation. There is no motive for the killer. Early reports of leftist media in the killer’s home leaked by detectives was not reported. No political connections were found. His girlfriend told police the killer did not discuss politics or gun control.
All Sheriff Lombardo said was that he (now) considers this a terrorist attack (as opposed to a criminal mass murder). "It had an influence on a certain demographic of people intended to cause harm." It's shame no one in the press conference asked a follow-up question. Did Lombardo mean "demographic" as country-music-concert-goers or as the type of people who listen to country music?
The report also speculated the Ogden/Life is Beautiful connection may have been a rehearsal. If that certain demographic meant mainly country music fans; usually conservatives whites who voted for Trump, it fits the earlier suggestion of political terrorism. If the downtown connection was a dry run, then Paddock was not simply looking for a crowd to mow down. He wanted a specific crowd to kill. Yet some of the killer's Internet searches make one curious if he truly examined other venues for just a mass killing.
As it was, this monster's final twist of the knife was to leave no clues as to why. So, by his fruits we must know him. The killer had an abandoned and malignant heart. He was a cruel coward intent on inflicting death and evil. As has been speculated, he was a near genius intent on delivering death and destruction on the largest and most diabolical scale he could imagine.
To quote Christopher and Jonathan Nolan, some people just want to watch the world burn. This “motive” has everything in common with most mass killers, each trying to score the largest body count and most infamy. Just the kind of thing you’d expect from a messed up son-a-bitch. His relatives said he threw himself into everything he did with passion; mass murder, as diabolical as it is, would receive the same attention as he gave to learning to fly.
His supposed motives were multivariate: revenge/harm to the casino industry, a blackeye for guns and the gun community, wreaking mayhem on a world he’d grown to despise, and fulfilling some sort of sick intellectual fantasy of murder; one careful and smart enough to leave nothing but an unfulfilled mystery. Perhaps being mentally ill, he wanted to deliver as much hurt to as many people/groups as possible.
The killer was not the only coward that night. By all accounts, the failure of early LVMPD officers to storm the killers suite, instead remaining in the hall on the floor below, was cowardice. There has not yet been a satisfactory response to explain why the officers did not charge the room. On a personal level, I cannot condemn the officers for wanting to stay alive. Yet they are sworn to protect the public. The public expects its police to sacrifice their lives to save innocent citizens, especially in the ultimate worst-case scenario like a mass shooting.
As public servants sworn and paid to give their lives, if necessary, the officers should have been ready to make that sacrifice. They should have charged the gunman’s door, sending a fusillade through the doors at the killer, in the hopes that the killer turned away from his attack on the helpless concert or chose to end his life at that point. Any distraction or diversionary attack may have saved lives and injuries on the ground. Time and time again, we have seen police (or armed citizen) intervention prematurely end these horrific acts.
In Parkland, the Broward County deputies stayed outside while officers from neighboring areas charged the arena. Post-Columbine, police tactics are supposed to reflect the first responding officers charging in to end the situation, at the cost of their lives if necessary. Police work is not for the faint of heart. Such situations call for gallantry; that is what the public demands of our police. We the public reserve the right to question the honor of men who fail to answer that call.
But in the midst of horror, evil, and timidity, there were heroes that night. Concertgoers used their bodies to shield friends, family, and strangers. Volunteers gave first aid under fire, turned folding barricades into stretchers, and drove the wounded to hospitals. Ever keeping with the American fighting spirit, people even tried to take shotguns from police cars to fight back, if necessary. And let’s not forget the noble guy who flipped the killer the bird while under fire.
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