Sheriff Lombardo boots FBI and raises total number of injuries to 851 - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

Sheriff Lombardo boots FBI and raises total number of injuries to 851

LAS VEGAS – Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo, head of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department held Friday his first press conference in three months.

One person who was absent was Aaron Rouse, the FBI ASAC of the Las Vegas FBI Division. When asked by a reporter why the FBI wasn’t present Lombardo stated it was by design and he asked them not to attend. Maybe he got tired of Rouse breathing down his neck and glaring at him at every presser.

Lombardo read from a script as he addressed the press which was another good move. He gets himself in trouble when he goes off script.

He announced the release of a preliminary investigative report that was prepared by the Force Investigation Team (FIT) of the LVMPD. The Baltimore Post-Examiner was the first to break the story and question why the homicide detectives were pulled from the investigation and why it was turned over to the FIT.

On that topic, Lombardo said, “Questions arose early on in this investigation as to why the homicide unit was not doing the whole investigation. Immediately upon the scene becoming static, our investigators separated the work tasking to ensure that we would have the appropriate amount of resources assigned to each crime scene. Homicide was determined to be the primary in regards to Route 91 scene and the FIT Team was determined to be primary in regards to the rooms at the Mandalay Bay and Mr. Paddock. Both scenes included the assistance of the FBI.”

“The release of this report is not standard practice in which LVMPD releases information regarding its criminal investigations. We would not in practice release a preliminary investigative report, but this is a unique circumstance. Let me stress this is a preliminary investigative report. In no way is this report comprehensive nor does it encompass every facet of the investigation. It gives the reader cliff notes that are based on the facts of 1 October written by the detectives that investigated this shooting. The comprehensive complete investigation will not be completed until sometime in the near future. An important piece on this, not all names associated with response to the report or the incident are included in this preliminary report. That was by design. It will be included, all names associated from my police department and every other public safety entity that responded and participated in different aspects of the event will be included in the comprehensive report.”

Do to the size and scope of this case and the community’s desire to know information relating to the 1 October shooting I am going to go against normal protocols I am releasing this information now. We are talking about the largest mass shooting in the history of the United States. The men and women of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the other federal, state and local enforcement individuals that assisted in this investigation are to be commended. The contents of this report include but are not limited to the sources utilized in the investigation.”

“An overview of the incident. The sequence of events beginning on September 17, 2017, when Paddock checked into the Ogden located in downtown Las Vegas and ending when officers made entry into Paddock’s rooms. The sequence in this report or the sequence timeline is based on numerous sources. Early on in this investigation and the press conferences, there was controversy about timestamps. That controversy will continue to take place. Timestamps are provided by the Mandalay Bay, by human sources and various other sources to determine the exact timing associated with each officer’s actions and the suspect’s actions. 2159, that was provided previously, we are still utilizing that more closely to 2200 and as you do your research you would each see what I am talking about.”

A listing of 58 deceased victims, a listing of total injured will be provided in a completed report. For informational purposes today, we are aware of 422 individuals that suffered some form or fashion of injuries associated with gunfire. In total we have determined there is 851 individuals injured directly related to the 1 October shooting.”

“Also included will be a brief overview of Stephen Paddock. Also, a detailed account of the actions that took place on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay. Descriptions of the Las Vegas Village venue and the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay. Items of evidentiary value recovered from various scenes. Preliminary findings from investigations to include certain indicators of intent revealed by Stephen Paddock’s actions leading up to October 1. Public venues and other locations researched by Paddock and some scene photography or photographs. This report is not going to answer every question or even answer the biggest question as to why he did what he did. What this report will shed light on is the planning of the attack, the research that was done by Paddock in looking for public venues for crowds gathered, Paddock’s movements in the days leading up to the attack and based on witness interviews and evidence how Paddock carried out the attack. You will see in the report Paddock’s disturbing search history from his computers to include extensive search history in ballistics and SWAT tactics. You will see that we recovered numerous photographs of child pornography. And as to the missing hard drive that was mentioned in previous press conferences, we have yet to determine when the hard drive was removed. It could have been in close proximity to 1 October or it could have been years prior. We are unable to locate it.”  

As you will read there was no suicide note, nor a manifesto left behind, no ideology or radicalization was discovered. We hope that the work that continues to be done on this case and will help paint a more complete picture why Paddock committed such evil. The results of the autopsy, the toxicology, and the pathology will be provided by the coroner’s office. It’s not a matter of public record. I realize there is litigation currently associated with the coroner’s office reference this matter, but any information reference those three items will be provided by the coroner’s office. The FBI’s Behavioral Analysis Unit are working tirelessly to provide answers as to why. But that is a long and detailed process and we are all going to have to be patient and let this investigation run its course. I know and believe there is only one suspect who killed 58 people and injured hundreds more. All the evidence recovered in this case supports that theory. There was one shooter in the 1 October massacre. There is only one person responsible and that was Stephen Paddock.”

“We do not anticipate bringing charges forward against Marilou Danley. As to any other people, the FBI has an ongoing case against an individual of federal interest. I will not be able to elaborate on that statement as it’s a pending investigation. Any further information reference that individual can be provided by the FBI. Its my hope this report will provide the media and the public an understanding of what occurred on 1 October.”

The Baltimore Post-Examiner was the first to question why all the police tactical movements the night of the massacre was broadcasted unencrypted for the public to hear. Tactical movements should never be openly broadcasted, it can place police officer’s lives in danger.

Lombardo addressed the radio system.

Before I close I would like to address an issue a number of you raised about changes to our police radio system. And specifically, if this will affect your ability to listen to our radio traffic. This change has been in the works for two years, two years, no relation to 1 October. It will enable our department to go on the open market to purchase end user devices such as pac sets and radios. We are no longer having to rely on a single proprietary vendor, subsequently it will save the department money. It will also allow us to update our radios over the air, via the Internet versus manually manipulating them. It will also allow our undercover units to have encrypted channels for safety. The press will continue to have access to all our calls for service with the patrol division.”

I don’t believe Lombardo is correct on what he said. The LVMPD went to the P25 Phase 2 protocol a few years ago. Outside of the patrol area commands all the specialized units to include vice, narcotics, organized crime, SWAT, etc. currently use encrypted channels.

Lombardo said that he doesn’t anticipate the completed comprehensive report to be completed until the end of the year.

Lombardo did contradict himself in response to a reporter that asked him if he felt Paddock losing money could have been a factor in why he did what he did. In the November 2, 2017 KLAS-TV interview he did say that, then a few minutes later in that same interview he said he did not think that was a deciding factor. Now he thinks it may have been.

As I watched the press conference live I was hoping that someone would address the issue of why the LVMPD full SWAT Team did not breach Paddock’s suite as Lombardo had told us they did from the start. Nobody asked him. Also no one asked him the status of the investigation or lack thereof relating to the leaked crime scene photographs by police personnel.

I read the 81-page preliminary report that was released after the press conference via the LVMPD website. This is what I have been wanting to see, an actual police report documenting some findings. I just couldn’t take any more of Lombardo’s lies, misleading and convoluted statements and contradictions. I have said it before. His comments are not reflective of the LVMPD police officers and detectives that I worked with in my twenty-year tenure in the hotel casino industry.

The report was much more than I expected, very detailed with some photographs as Lombardo stated. Plenty of good hard detective work went into that investigation as is apparent by reading the report. There are still questions concerning the investigation that need answering though.

After reviewing the 300 pages of the FBI search warrants and affidavits that were released last Friday and what I read in the LVMPD preliminary report, I feel comfortable in saying that I believe Stephen Paddock was the lone shooter responsible for the Las Vegas October 1, 2017 massacre and that he alone fired from his suite on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel. There is ample evidence to support that.

That doesn’t change my opinion of Sheriff Joe Lombardo and I stand by my belief that the massacre should never have happened in the first place.

I will have a follow-up story with my analysis of the report and why I am now certain Stephen Paddock acted alone in that hotel room.

Never forget the 58 people who were murdered and the 851 who were wounded and or injured in the worst mass shooting in American history, October 1, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

 

 

 


About the author

Doug Poppa

Doug Poppa is a US Army Military Police Veteran, former law enforcement officer, criminal investigator and private sector security and investigations management professional with 40 years of experience. In 1986 Mr. Poppa was awarded “Criminal Investigator of the Year” by the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office in Virginia for his undercover work in narcotics enforcement. He was also re-assigned to the Northern Virginia Regional Narcotics Enforcement Task Force for 18 months. In 1991 and again in 1992 Mr. Poppa’s testimony under oath in court led to the discovery that exculpatory evidence was withheld from the defense by the prosecutor and sheriff’s office officials during the 1988 trial of a man accused of attempted murder of his wife that led to his conviction. As a result of his testimony the man was ordered released from prison, given a new trial in 1992 and found not guilty. Mr. Poppa became the subject of local and national news media attention as a result of his testimony which led to the demise of his 12-year police career. After losing his job, at the request of the FBI, Mr. Poppa infiltrated in an undercover capacity a group of men who were plotting the kidnapping of a Dupont Chemical fortune heir and his wife in 1992. His stories have been featured on Inside Edition, A Current Affair, and CBS News’ Street Stories with Ed Bradley. Contact the author.
COMMENT POLICY
  • Barney Chooch

    It is impossible to believe Paddock was the only shooter. Utterly impossible, even Doug Poppa himself has pointed out that Paddocks hotel room interior connecting door was locked from the opposite side of where Paddocks body was located, making it impossible for him to have been the one that locked the door. Someone locked it from the other side, in the adjoining room.

    I listened to the radio transmissions on the night of the incident, live as it was happening, when I woke up around 1:30 am E/T and saw an alert on my phone. At appx 1:55 am I began texting several people I know in Law Enforcement, several that were actually on duty in a major city here in the east. I told them what was going on, they had no clue and I said I believed it was a terror attack and to be alert. I have looked back at my texts that I sent that night. Well after 2 am I was still texting about shots being fired.

    I heard LVMPD Officers transmit over the air “confirmed shots fired” and report an “active shooter inside the fairgrounds” repeatedly to the dispatcher and request additional units inside to the fairgrounds. I also heard another Officer report the same exact thing over the air inside the Mandalay Bay on the fourth floor, requesting more units.

    Also, I heard an Officer come over the air and advise that EMT’s were reporting they were being shot at near the Tropicana hotel. This was all after the shots had stopped coming from Paddocks room.

    Trained, professional, experienced Police Officers, eminently familiar with the sound of gunfire, are the source of these reports. We must either disregard their reports of “confirmed”, not “possible” shots fired, which they were clear about, and chalk all of their first hand observations as just a bunch of mistakes. Or, we believe they were correct, and Lombardo is lying and altering/omitting facts. I want him to say from his own mouth those Officers were wrong and did not hear or witness what they say they did.

    Police Officers make a distinction between “possible” and “confirmed” shots fired when they themselves are reporting them. Unlike civilians, they know the difference in what it signals to other Officers and the Dispatcher and what kind of response and reaction it will result in. Doug also knows that is true.

    In light of a sitting US Congressman coming out on Fox news and saying he has received compelling evidence of an Isis connection and people crossing in from Mexico involved in the shooting, and Lombardos lame, meek, response as “show me the proof”, I am totally convinced Lombardo knows its true and has no way out. Oddly, or conveniently, that was asked and dismissed in seconds, with out a single ounce of follow up or pressing, and was one of the last questions asked.

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