Report: Las Vegas Shooter Was Prescribed Anti-Anxiety Drugs in June
Stephen Paddock, the gunman who killed 59 people and wounded 527 more was prescribed anti-anxiety medication months before he opened fire on a crowd of 22,000.
Paddock purchased 50, 10-milligram tablets of diazepam, more widely known under its brand name Valium, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, citing records from the Nevada Prescription Monitoring Program.
The 64-year-old gunman bought the drugs at a Walgreens store in Reno, without insurance.
Paddock purchased it on the same day it was prescribed to him back in June this year. He was supposed to take only one pill a day.
The prescription was administered by physician Dr. Steven Winkler in the city of Henderson, Nevada, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported. His office declined to make him available for comment.
According to drugabuse.com, Valium is a popular sedative-hypnotic prescription drug that could trigger aggressive behavior.
But only chronic use or abuse of the drugs could cause the aggressive behavior.
Short-term effects include euphoria, a lack of coordination, and feeling of being drunk, according to the site.
“If somebody has an underlying aggression problem and you sedate them with that drug, they can become aggressive,” Dr. Mel Pohl, chief medical officer of the Las Vegas Recovery Center told the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
“It can disinhibit an underlying emotional state. … It is much like what happens when you give alcohol to some people … they become aggressive instead of going to sleep,” Pohl said.
Pohl also said the effects of the drug can be magnified by alcohol.
Later police announced they have upgraded Danley’s involvement in the incident. In a live press conference on Tuesday, Oct. 3, Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo announced the news.
“Currently she is a person of interest,” Lombardo told reporters in reference to Danley.
The motive for the transaction is unclear, NBC reported.
Danley was due to arrive in the Philippines on Oct. 1. She left the United States for Hong Kong on Sept. 25. She is a native of the Philippines and investigators say she likely traveled there to visit family.
According to the Brisbane Courier Mail, Danley is an Australian citizen. She lived on the Gold Coast for 20 years before moving to the United States.
Danley’s neighbors said she described herself as a gambler. Investigators found her slot-machine card in the hotel room from which Paddock fired on concertgoers. Danley’s LinkedIn profile says that she is a “high-limit hostess” at a Vegas casino. Paddock was using Danley’s slot-machine card which investigators used to find her name.