At least 20 people have been killed and 100 others injured in a mass shooting at a music concert in Las Vegas, Nevada, according to the US police.
“We have in excess of 100-plus injured and excess of 20-plus that have died at this point,” Las Vegas Metro Police Sheriff Joseph Lombardo told reporters on Monday morning.
“This is an ongoing investigation, but we are comfortable that the primary aggressor in this event is — has expired or passed away, and is no longer a threat,” he added.
Las Vegas Police Department advised people in a statement on Sunday night to stay away from Mandalay Bay Casino on the south end of the Vegas strip on Las Vegas Boulevard and across from McCarran International Airport.
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“Confirming that one suspect is down. This is an active investigation. Again, please do not head down to the Strip at this time,” LVMPD said in a tweet.
Thousands of fans were attending the concert next to the Mandalay Bay which was part of a three-day music festival.
Gunman’s companion identified
The gunman was on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, the police chief said.
“Officers responded to that location and engaged the suspect at that location,” Lombardo said.
“He is dead … He has been identified as a local resident. I will not release his identity at this time.”
Police released the name of a female companion of the gunman, identified as Mari Lou Danley.
“We are interested in talking to her for follow up,” he said
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Witnesses said the gunman opened fire with an initial burst and then appeared to reload as he continued his firing spree.
“We heard (what) sounded like a glass breaking, so you looked around to see what’s going on and then heard a pop, pop, pop,” Monique Dekerf told CNN.
“You’d think for a moment okay we’re fine, there’s no more gunfire, then it starts again.”
Police also asked onlookers to avoid sharing “tactical positions” of its officers on the internet out of fear that it would endanger the operation.
Singer Jason Aldean was on stage when the shooting started. And it came towards the end of the concert.
“We were watching the concert having a great time, then we heard what sounded like firecrackers,” witness Joe Pitz told the local Las Vegas Sun news outlet.
“I guess it was an automatic weapon going off but it literally sounded like firecrackers. Then soon enough there was commotion on the Mandalay Bay side of the stage. They were motioning for medics to come and safety people to come and Jason Aldean ran off the stage,” he said.
“Everybody in the vicinity went down. I don’t know if they were ducking or if they were but it was chaos.”
Special SWAT units were deployed to the scene of the shooting. Police had shut down the strip.