Twenty-four days after the Baltimore Post-Examiner broke the story that an officer fired his gun inside Stephen Paddock’s suite Oct. 1, Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo finally admitted it happened.
For nearly a month Lombardo withheld that information from the public until Monday when he confirmed the officer accidentally discharged his weapon inside Paddock’s suite.
Lombardo said the police firearm went off inside Paddock’s suite sometime after officers made entry, but the round or rounds were not fired in the same room where Paddock was found dead.
Lombardo said it was being investigated just like they do with any officer-involved use of force and that, “nobody was struck.”
The Baltimore Post-Examiner has raised the issue of why a SWAT officer fired his weapon in several stories since our first story on Oct. 6.
Why it took Lombardo over one month to come out and admit that a weapon was discharged the night the room was breached with explosives, is just another example of how Lombardo has not been forthright about the entire investigation.
Lombardo said that “nobody was struck.”
The SWAT officer who was inside the suite told the dispatcher, “Control, Zebra 20. We don’t need anybody else up on this floor. Break. We have one SWAT officer that did fire. Negative injuries on anybody else.”
We still have no explanation as to the circumstances of what caused the unidentified officer to fire his weapon and whether it was from a semi-automatic or fully automatic firearm and how many round(s) were fired.
Did the SWAT officer have a body-worn camera operating is also not known?
We still do not know why the LVMPD Homicide Division is not participating in the investigation of 58 murders and the alleged suicide of Paddock.
The investigation is being conducted by the Force Investigation Team (FIT) that investigates officer involved shootings. That team answers to their bureau commander, Capt. Kelly McMahill, the wife of Undersheriff, Kevin McMahill.
If the Force Investigating Team is investigating the discharge of the SWAT officers weapon, that still does not explain why they would be investigating the homicides and the alleged suicide.
It is very possible that the FBI took charge of the entire investigation early on after the LVMPD screwed up the initial interview with Mandalay Bay Security Officer, Jesus Campos.
We still do not know the manner and cause of Paddock’s death. That has not been released by the coroner’s office and neither has the estimated time of death.
The Clark County Coroner-Medical Examiner considers the coroner autopsy report, coroner medical examination report, toxicology report and the corner investigation report, to be confidential and not for public record.
Leaked LVMPD crime scene photographs show the body of Paddock lying on the floor with a revolver above Paddock’s head.
Was that revolver owned by Paddock or someone else?
A full inventory of all 23 weapons found inside the suite has never been released as well as whether a trace of the serial numbers indicated if all the weapons were owned by Paddock or another person.
Lombardo also said that there were no hotel surveillance cameras on Paddock’s room or in the stairwells.
That is not breaking news, we already knew that. Tell us something we don’t know.
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.