Was the Las Vegas Killer a 'Lone Wolf'? Maybe Not.
Did Las Vegas mass killer Stephen Paddock act alone?
Statements made by authorities investigating Sunday's horrific shooting are increasingly indicating they don't believe he was a "lone wolf" actor.
Both Las Vegas Sheriff Joe Lombardo and representatives from the FBI gave indications they are looking for other possible suspects.
The one named person of interest in the attack is Paddock's paramour, Marilou Danley, who was questioned by the FBI yesterday after her return from the Philippines.
In a statement released yesterday by her attorney, she denied knowledge of Paddock's plans.
With 59 confirmed dead in the attack, a new report last night from the Las Vegas Review-Journal indicates the incident could have been even more deadly.
According to their report, Paddock targeted two massive jet fuel tanks in the vicinity.
Las Vegas Strip mass murderer Stephen Paddock used his Mandalay Bay hotel room to fire bullets at jet fuel tanks Sunday night, a knowledgeable source told the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
The bullets left two holes in one of two circular white tanks. One of the bullets penetrated the tank, but did not cause a fire or explosion near the Route 91 Harvest country music festival, another knowledgeable source said late Wednesday.
The tanks are roughly 1,100 feet from the concert site, where Paddock killed 58 people and wounded almost 500. Several airplane hangars belonging to prominent corporations are also near the tanks
A source knowledgeable about airport operations said jet fuel is hard to ignite and tanks like those across from Mandalay Bay have mechanisms in place to prevent fires.
Mike Boyd, a Colorado-based aviation consultant, echoed those words.
“A machine gun is not going to blow up a tank of fuel,” Boyd said. “Jet fuel itself sitting there in a big wet pile is very hard to ignite. You have to be a very amateur terrorist to think anything like that.”
And authorities now know that he had intended to escape.
The Associated Press reports:
They know he had a plan to survive the shooting and try to escape, though would not say how.
“This individual and this attack didn’t leave the sort of immediately accessible thumbprints that you find on some mass casualty attacks,” McCabe said. “Putting aside the somewhat dubious claims of responsibility that we see in each one of these instances, we look for actual indicators of affiliation, of motive, of intent, and so far we’re not there. We don’t have those sort of indicators.”
Clark County Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said at a news conference Wednesday night that Paddock must have had some help along the way given his huge arsenal the explosive materials found in his car, and his meticulous plan, but they don’t know who that might be.
And authorities are discovering he may have planned out other attacks or dry-runs:
Despite the absence of evidence so far of any motive for the attack, the media have filled in the gaps on their own about who's responsible: Donald Trump, the NRA, the Second Amendment, and "white men."
And they have a ready-made answer as a solution: gun control.
Last night, CNN gave House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi an hour to push for gun control.
The problem with the background-check solution is that Paddock passed background checks to obtain his weapons.
The media haven't exactly covered themselves in glory in their coverage of this case, pushing all manner of gun-related bogus facts and fake news.
Take, for instance, this USA Today graphic indicating you can modify your semi-automatic AR-15 with a 40mm grenade launcher.
In fact, both the grenade launcher and the grenades are determined to be "destructive devices" under the National Firearms Act and are prohibited to the vast majority of gun owners, and every launcher and grenade is required to be registered with the federal government.
CBS News has also discovered a new form of ammunition: "automatic rounds" (which don't exist):
And in a cutting-edge analysis, TIME magazine finds one common factor in mass shootings: half of all humanity.
CNN finds that not all men are to blame —just white men.
There's a lot of attention focused on the bump fire stocks used by the shooter to simulate automatic weapons fire.
Yesterday, Sen. Dianne Feinstein introduced a bill calling for a ban on bump fire stocks.
But it bears noting who was responsible for determining that bump fire stocks were devices not covered by the National Firearms Act — the Obama administration.
Despite the claim that ISIS was involved, authorities are still unconvinced.
It seems clear that what we know so far about Sunday's attack is this: What we don't know is more than what we do know.
But what we do know raises more questions than it answers.
Hopefully, authorities will be able to begin to fill in some of those gaps, if only to stop the media and the politicians from continuing to do so on their own.