Authorities investigating the Las Vegas massacre turned Wednesday to the shooter’s girlfriend, hoping for more answers about the gunman and what may have sparked the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.
Investigators have spent the days since Sunday’s attack – which killed 58 people and injured hundreds more – struggling to explain why 64-year-old Stephen Paddock holed up in a high-rise hotel overlooking the Las Vegas Strip and opened fire on concertgoers at a country music festival far below.
What they have found so far has been chilling evidence of extensive preparations, as Paddock turned his two-room suite in the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino into an armed fortress. He brought in 23 guns along with “bump” stocks that can allow them to more quickly fire bullets, police said. The gunman also placed cameras so that he could monitor the arrival of police officers, who eventually breached his room and found that he killed himself before they arrived.
But a motive has remained elusive. Police hoped they could learn more from Paddock’s girlfriend, Marilou Danley, who was in the Philippines when the shooting occurred.
Danley arrived late Tuesday night at Los Angeles International Airport and was met by FBI agents, according to a person familiar with the investigation. She is considered a critical witness in trying to decipher Paddock’s motive.
While investigators have described her as a “person of interest,” they have not suggested that she is considered an accomplice or involved in any way.
(c) 2017, The Washington Post · Mark Berman, Matt Zapotosky