A police officer accidentally fired his weapon after breaching the 32nd-floor suite of Las Vegas gunman Stephen Paddock’s room, the Clark County sheriff told Las Vegas Review-Journal on Monday, Oct 31.
The revelation breaks more than two weeks of silence from authorities as they grow increasingly tight-lipped about the investigation surrounding the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.
Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo says that one of the officers who breached Paddock’s room fired his weapon after the squad broke through a second door into a separate suite.
“It happened and we’re investigating it, just like we do with any officer-involved use of force,” Lombardo said. “Nobody was struck.”
It is unclear what prompted the accident.
Lombardo also confirmed that the only security cameras on the 32nd floor of Mandalay Bay faced the elevators. There we no cameras facing the hallway toward Paddock’s room or the stairwell door right next to it, which security guard Jesus Campos approached before Paddock allegedly fired at him through the double doors of the suite.
Independent journalist Laura Loomer reported the fact that there are no cameras in the hallways at all MGM properties on Oct. 11. It is unclear why it took the authorities nearly a month after the shooting to confirm the information.
Authorities have for weeks refused to answer basic questions about the shooting, frustrating media outlets and fueling speculation online about what really happened on Oct. 1.
The Clark County coroner is yet to release the cause of death for Paddock. No surveillance footage of Paddock entering the hotel has been released.
According to the official timeline, Paddock started firing from his window shortly after 10 p.m., killing 58 people and injuring more than 500 before turning the gun on himself. Police breached his room at 11:20 p.m., more than an hour after he started firing, for reasons that remain unclear.
Authorities are not the only ones that appear to be controlling the flow of information about the shooting. MGM, the holding company of Mandalay Bay, has been paying for the hotel stay of security guard Jesus Campos, a central witness to the shooting, Las Vegas Review-Journal reported. Campos gave one interview to daytime comedian Ellen DeGeneres after canceling five interviews with major news networks.
Campos has since been subjected to a court subpoena by a victim of the shooting demanding answers.
Meanwhile, independent journalists on the ground in Las Vegas have been filling the information void. Epoch Times reported last week about a bullet hole discovered by independent journalist Laura Loomer. A man assisting Loomer used a laser pointer to trace the round to an unfinished Ferris wheel tower overlooking the Route 91 Harvest music festival stage.
That same tower has been pinpointed as the potential location of a second shooter in both an audio analysis and a muzzle-reflection analysis in theories posted by volunteers online.