LAS VEGAS — U.S. District Court Judge Jennifer Dorsey unsealed more than 300 pages of federal search warrants and affidavits Friday requested by FBI special agents during the initial investigation of Stephen Paddock.
Several media outlets including CNN, the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post and the Las Vegas Review Journal had filed petitions in federal and state court last year requesting that all documents and evidence in possession of law enforcement concerning the investigation of the worst mass shooting in American history be released.
A hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, January. 16, 2018 in Clark County District Court in relation to evidence in possession of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department concerning the investigation that media outlets also want to be released.
The FBI requested those warrants in relation to charges of Destruction/Damage of Aircraft or Aircraft Facilities, Violence at International Airport, Unlawful Interstate Transport/Delivery of Firearms by Non-Federal Firearms Licensee and Aiding and Abetting. According to one affidavit filed October 6, 2017, the FBI Agent stated have been committed by Stephen Paddock, Marilou Danley, and others yet unknown.
Reading through the federal search warrants and affidavits that were released by Judge Dorsey on Friday gives an insight into the probable cause for the warrants and the items/areas searched.
After examining all 300 pages that were released, I compiled the following pertinent excerpts:
Your Affiant makes this affidavit in support of an application for a search warrant for information associated with email accounts firstname.lastname@example.org (“Target Account 1”) and email@example.com (“Target Account 2”). Target Account 1 is an account associated with Stephen Paddock. Target Account 2 is an account associated with Marilou Danley.
On the evening of Sunday, October 1, 2017, Route 91 Harvest, a music festival, was in progress at 3901 South Las Vegas Boulevard, Las Vegas, Nevada. At approximately 10:08 p.m., the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) received calls reporting shots had been fired at the concert and multiple victims were struck. LVMPD determined the shots were coming from Rooms 134 and 135 on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, located due west of the festival grounds at 3950 South Las Vegas Boulevard, Las Vegas, Nevada. These rooms are an elevated position which overlooks the concert venue. Witness statements and video footage captured during the attack indicates that the weapons being used were fired in a fully automatic fashion.
LVMPD officers ultimately made entry into the room and located an individual later identified as Stephen Paddock. Paddock was deceased from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Paddock’s Nevada driver’s license was located in the Mandalay Hotel room with Paddock, and both hotel rooms were registered in his name. A player’s club card in name of Marilou Danley was located in Paddock’s room, and the card returned to the address listed on Babbling Brook Street in Mesquite, Nevada. FBI agents located Danley, who was traveling outside the United States at the time of the shooting. It was ultimately determined that Danley resided with Paddock at the Babbling Brook address.
On October 2, 2017, search warrants were executed on Paddock’s Mandalay Bay hotel rooms, Paddock’s vehicle at Mandalay Bay, and two Nevada residences owned by Paddock: 1372 Babbling Brook Court in Mesquite, and 1735 Del Webb Parkway in Reno, Nevada. Officers and Agents found over 20 firearms, hundreds of rounds of ammunition, and hundreds of spent shell casings in the Mandalay Bay hotel rooms, in close proximity to Paddock’s body. Over a thousand rounds of rifle ammunition and 100 pounds of explosive material was found in Paddock’s vehicle. The additional explosive material, about 18 firearms, and over 1,000 rounds of ammunition were located at the Mesquite residence. A large quantity of ammunition and multiple firearms were recovered from the Reno residence.
As of this date, 58 people have been identified to have been killed in Paddock’s attack and another 557 were reportedly injured. Additionally, investigators discovered that Stephen Paddock also utilized a firearm to shoot fuel tanks on Las Vegas McCarran International Airport property. Multiple bullet holes were found in the tank, which investigators believe was an attempt by Stephen Paddock to cause the tanks to explode.
In an effort to determine whether or not Stephen Paddock was assisted and/or conspired with unknown individuals, investigators have attempted to identify all of Stephen Paddock’s associates. It was quickly determined that a casino player’s card in the name of Marilou Danley was located in the room at the time of the attack. She had been identified thus far as the most likely person who aided or abetted Stephen Paddock based on her informing law enforcement that her fingerprints would likely be found on the ammunition used during the attack. Subsequently, investigators worked to identify the communications facilities used by Stephen Paddock and Marilou Danley.
Based on a review of Stephen Paddock’s financial accounts, Target Account 1 was determined to belong to Stephen Paddock. On October 3, 2017, investigators requested an emergency disclosure of records from Microsoft related to Target Account 1 so it could be immediately searched for any evidence of additional co-conspirators. Unfortunately, the information was only requested for a six-month timeframe. Within the account, investigators identified Target Account 2 as one that belonged to Marilou Danley, which was clearly based on the communications between the two email accounts.
On September 25, 2017, an email was exchanged between the Target Accounts which discussed a wire transfer of funds which was sent by Stephen Paddock to Marilou Danley. It is unclear what the purpose of the wire transfer was, but Marilou Danley is known to have been in the Philippines at the time.
Additionally, on July 6, 2017, Target Account 1 sent an email to firstname.lastname@example.org which read, “Try an ar before u buy. We have a huge selection. Located in the Las Vegas area.” Later that day, an email was received back from email@example.com to Target Account 1 that read, “We have a wide variety of optics and ammunition to try.” And lastly, Target Account 1 later sent an email to firstname.lastname@example.org that read, “For a thrill try out bumpfire ar’s with a 100-round magazine.” Investigators believe these communications may have been related to the eventual attack that occurred at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.
Your Affiant believes the requested search warrants will yield significant information from Microsoft such as Stephen Paddock’s and Marilou Danley’s contact lists, email messages content, IP address usage, photographs, third-party applications associated with the account, and more, which may constitute evidence of the planning of the attack and potentially identify other participants in the attack. Ultimately, your Affiant strongly believes the requested information will lead investigators to determine the full scope of Stephen Paddock’s plan and Marilou Danley’s possible involvement.
On September 7, 2017, the Email Account received an email relating to the Target Amazon Account’s purchase of an EOTech 512.A65 Tactical Holographic forearm accessory. Within the email, which was addressed to Stephen Paddock, Amazon confirmed the firearm accessory would be delivered to Stephen Paddock’s residence. Investigators believe this piece of equipment was utilized in the attack carried out by Stephen Paddock. Your Affiant believes the requested search warrant will yield significant information from Amazon such as Stephen Paddock’s search history, purchase history, IP addresses, shipping addresses, payment information, and more, which may constitute evidence of his planning of the attack and potentially identify other participants in the attack. Ultimately, your Affiant strongly believes the requested information will lead investigators to determine the full scope of Stephen Paddock’s plan and/or conspiracy.
…. This warrant applies to information associated with Microsoft email account email@example.com.
…. This warrant applies to information associated with Google email account firstname.lastname@example.org.
…. The items to be searched are the associated Instagram user ID names as follows: stephenpaddock47, mariloudanley, mariloudanleyy, mariloudanleypaddock, marilou.danley.
While monitoring an identified Facebook accounts of Marilou Danley (facebook.com/marilou.danley) after the shooting, LVMPD investigators noted that the account settings and privacy settings were changed on October 2, 2017, at approximately 0030 hours. At approximately 0246 hours, the Facebook account was deleted.
Officers and Agents found over 20 firearms, hundreds of rounds of unfired ammunition (much of it in pre-loaded high capacity magazines), range finding devices, several suitcases (some partially full of pre-loaded high capacity magazines), a set of body armor, an apparent homemade gas mask, and hundreds of spent cartridge cases in the Mandalay Bay hotel rooms, in close proximity to Paddock’s body. Over a thousand rounds of rifle ammunition and a significant amount of explosive precursor material was found in Paddock’s vehicle (specifically the binary explosive brand-named Tannerite). Additional explosive precursor material, approximately 18 firearms, and over 1,000 rounds of ammunition were located at the Mesquite residence. A large quantity of ammunition and multiple firearms were recovered from the Reno residence.
Paddock also fired several high-caliber rifle shots at large fuel tanks within the property line of McCarran International airport property. Multiple bullet impacts were located on the tank, which investigators believe was an attempt by Paddock to explode the tanks.
As the investigation progressed, investigators learned that Paddock planned the attack meticulously and took many methodical steps to avoid detection of his plot and to thwart the eventual law enforcement investigation that would follow. The steps included the apparent destruction and/or concealment of digital storage media and the use of anonymously attributed communications devices. Based on your Affiant’s training and expertise, it is his belief that the methodical nature of the planning employed by Paddock, coupled with is efforts to undermine the preceding investigation, are factors indicative of a level of sophistication which is commonly found in mass casualty events such as this.
The investigation has also revealed that Paddock may have been treated for yet unidentified medical conditions and that he spent significant time and expense prior to the attack purchasing and caching the weapons and other instrumentalities he used in the shootings. Some of these items included glass cutters, suitcases, and a pre-paid cellular phone.
Investigators are currently conducting an analysis of available financial records. To date, this analysis has revealed that Paddock made the purchases of items used in the attack throughout the last approximately 12 months. A large portion of the ammunition and firearms accessory purchases appear to have been made through Internet-based retailers. Law enforcement continues to investigate the sourcing of purchases made by Paddock preceding the attack.
Danley admits she helped load magazines
Subsequent to her identification as Paddock’s companion and co-habitant at the subject premises, Marilou Danley returned to the United States and was thereafter voluntarily interviewed by law enforcement with her attorney present. During the interview, Danley corroborated much of what had been previously deduced by investigators, but she was adamant that she had no prior inclination of Paddock’s intentions to conduct the attack. While investigators obtained a DNA buccal swab from Danley, she spontaneously stated that her fingerprints would likely be found on Paddock’s ammunition because she occasionally participated in loading magazines. Danley has not been arrested and she has agreed to cooperate with investigators. Although, the investigation to date has not produced any conclusive evidence that Danley aided Paddock, had foreknowledge of his plans or has been deceptive with law enforcement, this aspect of the investigation is still the subject of intensive review. Therefore, your Affiant asserts, for the purposes of this affidavit, that although there is currently no evidence to suggest criminal involvement by Danley, investigators are not yet prepared to rule this possibility out.
During the execution of the search warrant at the Mandalay Bay hotel room where the attack occurred, three cellular phones were seized. All of the phones are believed to have belonged to Stephen Paddock. Two of those phones were unlocked and able to be forensically examined. Neither phone contained significant information that allowed investigators to determine the full scope of Stephen Paddock’s planning and preparation for the attack. The other phone, however, a ZTE Model Z837VL, was locked and investigators do not believe it can be forensically examined. Investigators believe the only way to gain access to the content of the locked ZTE phone will be through the authorization to demand information associated with the Target Account from Google, the company which owns the operating software installed on the phone.
Why Paddock was sending himself an email message concerning the weapons is a cause for inquiry. It is possible that it was done by someone other than Paddock. Danley admitted to helping load magazines but stated she knew nothing of Paddock’s plans. I have my doubts on that. Paddock purchased a pre-paid cell phone and had another cellphone that was locked but still had two other cellphones, raises some flags with me. Danley’s Facebook account changed and then deleted a few a hours after the shooting is suspicious.
Never forget the 58 people who died and the over 500 wounded in Las Vegas, Nevada on October 1, 2017, during the worst mass shooting in American history.
Doug authored over 135 articles on the October 1, 2017 Las Vegas Massacre, more than any other single journalist in the country. He investigates stories on corruption, law enforcement and crime. Doug is a US Army Military Police Veteran, former police officer, deputy sheriff and criminal investigator. Doug spent 20 years in the hotel/casino industry as an investigator and then as Director of Security and Surveillance. He also spent a short time with the US Dept. of Homeland Security, Transportation Security Administration. In 1986 Doug was awarded Criminal Investigator of the Year by the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office in Virginia for his undercover work in narcotics enforcement. In 1992 and 1993 Doug testified in court that a sheriff’s office official and the county prosecutor withheld exculpatory evidence during the 1988 trial of a man accused of the attempted murder of his wife. Doug’s testimony led to a judge’s decision to order the release of the man from prison in 1992 and awarded him a new trial, in which he was later acquitted. As a result of Doug breaking the police “blue wall of silence,” he was fired by the county sheriff. His story was featured on Inside Edition, Current Affair and CBS News’ “Street Stories with Ed Bradley”. In 1992 after losing his job, at the request of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Doug infiltrated a group of men who were plotting the kidnapping of a Dupont fortune heir and his wife. Doug has been a guest on national television and radio programs speaking on the stories he now writes as an investigative journalist.