Nauseating when attorney for Las Vegas Massacre victims praised MGM Resorts International - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

Nauseating when attorney for Las Vegas Massacre victims praised MGM Resorts International

LAS VEGAS  — When Las Vegas attorney Robert Eglet  announced the settlement in the lawsuits stemming from the Las Vegas Massacre on Thursday, I almost thought I was listening to one of the attorneys from MGM Resorts International(MGMRI), the owners of the Mandalay Bay Hotel and the Las Vegas Village grounds, the site of the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival.

I was shocked and sickened as I heard Eglet make continual comments praising MGMRI with little mention of the families of the 58 who were killed or the more than 450 who survived after being wounded.

Since the Massacre, I have authored over 135 articles for the Baltimore Post-Examiner on this tragedy, more than any other single journalist in the country. I broke one story after another, most if not all of which went ignored by the media.

I have spoken to survivors and family members of those who were killed whose support gave me the strength to keep investigating.

I could not have written many of the stories that I did without the law enforcement sources I had, the employees of MGMRI who steered me in the right direction and others who provided information.

I have to give credit to the man who identifies himself only as Weg Oag. This gentleman compiled every single document that was ordered released by the courts as well as all the LVMPD police body camera footage and placed them all on his website for public view, at no charge. Many times, attorneys would call me asking where they could find this particular video or that, and I referred them to the website. His work greatly assisted my research. Job well-done sir.

That being said there is still much more that we do not know.

The lawsuits may be over however the pursuit of the truth will go on to uncover what is being held back from the public. It’s not over by any stretch of the imagination.

Eglet praises MGMRI

The following are excerpts from Eglet’s press conference on October 3:

Eglet: MGM’s stated goal from the outset of this litigation was to resolve these matters so the community, the victims and their families can move forward in the healing process and today’s announcement is a step forward in that direction and proof in my mind that MGM meant what they said at the outset of this litigation that their desire was to resolve this thing globally.

Eglet: We at MGM truly believe that this settlement will provide fair compensation for thousands of victims and their families. This has been a long process but we at MGM believe this conclusion is the best for our community, the company, and the victims.

Eglet: I would like to make clear that this settlement is not an admission of liability by MGM by any stretch of the imagination.

Eglet: I would like to say a few words about MGM. I have been practicing law right now for 32 years and I was thinking last night that I know I have sued at least hundreds and probably over a thousand companies and corporations during my career for various different negligence or product liability cases. In that time frame, this is the first time I ever had the ability and the desire to say something good about the defendant in this case. I want to tell you that in my view what MGM has done here through this process and through this meditation represents the highest standard of corporate citizenship that I have ever seen in my career. They are quite frankly a shining example of what corporations can do in America in that they can do well for their shareholders as well as do well for the community and MGM has proved that in this case. In my view, they have set the bar for corporate citizenship around the country and as a lifelong Nevadan, I cannot tell you how proud I am that MGM is a Nevada company here in Nevada. We all know that they are the largest employer in our state. They have proved here, and they have proved many times before that they are an important member of our community and they genuinely care about Las Vegas and Nevada as a whole and what they had done here through this settlement was quite frankly astonishing in my view. You just don’t see normally this type of corporate behavior in America very often.

Eglet: I would be remiss if I didn’t speak about MGM’s employees in the broader Las Vegas community here. As MGM’s CEO Jim Murren has said on multiple occasions MGM has the best employees in the business surrounded by one of the best communities in the world, Las Vegas. While the past two years have been challenging, MGM employees have supported each other, and the broader community has been inspired. The trust, loyalty, and dedication that MGM’s valued employees have shown to their great company has allowed them to unite and do what is right as they move forward, and we at the MGM hope this agreement will allow the victims, first responders, and the entire community to look forward to the future and continue on a path forward toward healing.

Eglet: This mediation went on just short of eight months, Jim Murren and John McManus, their general counsel, and the MGM’s team and lawyers were exceptional. They were professional throughout this entire process and I cannot say enough good things about them, I really can’t and that is an unusual position for me to be in, but I cherish it today because it’s all true.

Eglet: So, again I want to commend MGM. I want to say to you that I’m not just saying this because this case settled, and they’ve agreed to settle this case. I’m saying this because of the way they were throughout this mediation. It became very clear to me within just a few weeks of this mediation that MGM’s desire was to help or community and help these victims and I’m very proud of what they’ve done here today.

Eglet: Last year I was the loudest voice in the country saying negative things about MGM when they sued a number of the victims in this case. MGM at that time kept saying to the press we just want to figure out a way to get all these cases in one venue so we can work toward resolution of the litigation. I didn’t believe them, I said I don’t believe that’s true, I said that in press conferences. I was wrong, I was wrong, and they proved that to me in the first several weeks of this mediation, it became very clear that was their intention. Now, we didn’t agree on the procedural methods they were going about and that’s why the mediation was so successful because we were able to agree on the right, the best procedure to get this case resolved. But after going through eight months of this mediation with MGM, I do not doubt their good intention at this time.

Eglet: I will tell you; they have made me the most loyal customer they will ever have. If I have family or friends in town, I’m putting them up in an MGM property every time now because they have to be shown the most outstanding corporate citizenship I have ever witnessed, and I think all of us in this case have ever witnessed in our careers.

Eglet: I just want to say that I’m very impressed with MGM here, really am.

Eglet sang a different tune in April 2018 when he appeared on The Young Turks and was interviewed by Cenk Uygur and slammed MGMRI:

Eglet: It was a massacre, quite frankly.

Uygur: What else went wrong that night?

EgIet: It was a calamity of errors that night. First of all Las Vegas, the local law enforcement, as well as the casinos, have been getting notices from Homeland Security since the early part of the year, last year, 2017, that Las Vegas was, all of the Internet, was a soft target, there was the probability, they thought there was at least a strong possibility that there could be a terrorist attack of some kind there because it was soft target. Unfortunately, the MGM didn’t prepare at all, in any of their hotels or resorts there.

Well, you’ve got large crowds of people, you know walking up and down the street at any time, you got high buildings that you know look over these crowds of people, you’ve got outdoor concert venues, and this wasn’t the only outdoor concert venue in Las Vegas. There are multiple outdoor concert venues. So, there’s a lot of places where people can be. You know this concert venue is right on the Strip, it would be just as easy for someone to drive a semi-truck through this makeshift chain link fence they put up around the property with explosives on it, as there was shooter so, there was lots of things that the MGM could have done. There are preparations, things the MGM could have done. This concert venue was so inappropriate, so insecure. There wasn’t proper markings for the exits, there was no plan of evacuation, in case any sort of attack of any sort occurred. There was no announcement that occurred when this happened. No one knew what to do, it was pandemonium there.

When you look at the other things they do with security, when MGM took over a lot of these properties and combined all the resources, you know these corporations come in they buy a bunch of different properties and they’ll combine their resources, they consolidate the security and housekeeping to cut costs, it raises their profits. One of the things we know they did, they significantly reduced their armed security, from armed security to unarmed security. Why did they do that? Well, armed security is $18.00 an hour in Nevada, unarmed security is $13.00 an hour, so that’s going to increase your profits, just that one thing.

We know there was significant errors made by MGM. They didn’t provide adequate security for either the venue or for this hotel to make sure they didn’t have a customer or anyone coming onto this property with firearms, much less, more than two dozen militarized type firearms. I mean they have signs at his hotel, Mandalay Bay, that say firearms are not permitted on these premises, and yet they take no steps to make sure that they don’t have patrons coming onto their premises with firearms. That’s the duty they have.

Closing comments

I have said repeatedly throughout the past two years that MGMRI would settle out of court and that these lawsuits would never see the light of day in front of a civil jury. I was proven correct.

Why was I so sure?

Because no matter whatever MGMRI states publicly, the Las Vegas Massacre was entirely foreseeable and preventable, I proved that in many of my articles.

Corporate negligence, complacency, incompetence, and greed resulted in the death of 58 people and the wounding and injuring of hundreds of others.

As for the monetary settlement. MGMRI got off easy. Their insurance carriers will absorb just about all of the purported payout, about $750 million. MGMRI will pick up the additional $50 million if it reaches the $800 million.

There are about 4,400 total plaintiffs. How much they each will receive remains to be seen.

So, in actuality, MGMRI pays nothing but maybe higher insurance premiums.

The Las Vegas Massacre should never have happened.

 

Feature photo: Robert Eglet press conference October 3 2019 (Screenshot)





About the author

Doug Poppa

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. Contact the author.
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7 Comments

  1. Robert Patterson says:

    How is It you’ve done so many articles but never spoken to my family? My wife of 21 years is on of the 58

    Reply
    • Anonymous says:

      Mr. Patterson,

      I’m personally very sorry for your family’s loss. I know that we have never spoken or met, but I was there that night. I read a story about Lisa and I just want to extend my condolences to your family. Im sure this is all very difficult to hear and feel and more difficult for your children.

      God bless you all and please be well.
      Sincerely,
      Roger Kenis

      Reply
    • Doug Poppa
      Doug Poppa says:

      My condolences on the loss of your wife Robert. I spent the majority of my time investigating how and why this tragedy occurred. It was an exhaustive process and still many questions remain. The mainstream media focused more on the human interest aspect of the Massacre which should never be minimized, but they failed miserably in other areas and I was filling that void. You can always reach out to me at baltimorepostexaminer@gmail.com. Again, sorry for your loss. It should never have happened. I will continue to investigate and follow-up on credible leads. It is not over by a longshot.

      Reply
  2. Doug Poppa
    Doug Poppa says:

    Well said Roger. It’s not all about the money. Many survivors and victims families feel the same way you do. What Eglet said was a slap in the face to all of them. Catherine Lombardo NEVER would have been a spokesperson for MGMRI. I will miss hearing her on the attack. Hope my story made up for the disrespect done to the 58 people who lost their lives that night and the survivors. MGMRI placed profit over security and safety. It should never have happened.

    Reply
    • Roger A Kenis says:

      Doug,

      As far as I am concerned, you have been the hero to so many of us, for telling it the way it is. Your navigating thru the released evidence shows just how savy you are as an investigator. You have laid it all out for the world to see and as many people that try to defend MGMRIs actions or inactions, they only feed the fuel I personally need to see this thru.

      Equal opportunity, transparency, justice, and accountability are not just words to throw out when it suits our needs but are the rule of law that we live by. Without it, nothing is sacred and only leaves this world to the criminal mischief they see fit to display. While some corruptness has been tolerated by the masses as just the way life goes, it has also lead to what we face today; a moutain that looks unscaleable and to big to be conquored. It is not.

      Their days are numbered and all of the show they have put on will come to an end, eventually. They can rig it all the way, they already have but one day someone will be in a court room. And however crazy they want to make me sound, or denigrate my character, video proof along with all of the other evidence is on our side. They have a dirty history themselves, and their record will reflect. Lets see just who the people believe?

      I hate to insert a corny Marine joke, but they have seen nothing yet, and they can “watch this”…

      And yes, your story does help with the disrespect because it tells the truth, so many have been denied by our corrupted media. Where are all the politicians, where are our law enforcement that swore to uphold the law now? That is a challenge to them because they have a duty, and their leadership is failing us all by not stepping in. This is not just civil but criminal and officers need to step forward and tell Joe like it wasn’t.

      Honor, courage, and commitment.
      Semper Fidelis

      Reply
  3. Roger A Kenis says:

    Ive got a few comments to point out. I still have not seen camera footage from the multiple cameras on the Mandalay Bay rooftop. According to reports there was one camera above 32-134 that just so happens, they reported as being down (how convient) for them.
    But if thats the case, where is the other camera footage? One overlooking the crowd is repeatedly used but where is the footage from the cameras right above 32-135 or from the cameras on the other side of Mandalay bays structure? That is not the only camera feed and I demand it be released. They are withholding evidence from the public in violation of a court order.

    The “we at MGM” comment really pisses me off. Who works for whom, the defendant or the victims?

    While some may want to take the money and move on because they need the funds, others will not stop until the truth is told and accountability is had.

    They manipulate our legal system, our rule of law and use our LE against us. They treat us all as fools, while dividing us to prevent the truth from being told but the truth will come out eventually. Evil will not win.

    Reply

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