Initial reports indicate that Stephen Paddock had as many as 23 firearms in his Mandalay Bay hotel room at the time of the massacre in Las Vegas. Many of those were semi-automatic weapons that were modified to shoot in a fully automatic mode. From his 32nd floor room, Stephen Paddock opened fire on the Route 91 Harvest Festival crowds below. Nearly 22,000 people in the crowd below scrambled for their lives, but what happened in the days leading up to the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history?
23 Guns in One Mandalay Bay Hotel Room
At this time, the mass shooting in Las Vegas is still under investigation. Few details have been released to the public, but we do know that the shooter had up to 23 guns, many of them large, semi-automatic rifles that were converted to shoot fully automatically, in a small hotel room for as many as three days prior to the shooting. Investigators say that Paddock may have gotten the guns into his room in up to 10 suitcases. Since storage can sometimes be difficult to come by in a small single-occupancy hotel room, there are still some questions about where the guns were kept while housekeepers were cleaning the room on a daily basis.
Suspicious Activity in a Hotel Room
It can be difficult to unpack the contents of one or two suitcases into a tiny hotel dresser or closet. How do 10 suitcases and nearly two-dozen guns go unnoticed by hotel staff for days? This mass shooting will likely still be under investigation for weeks and months to come. We still don’t know whether hotel housekeepers reported any suspicious activity or items to the appropriate authorities.
Innkeeper Responsibility and Public Safety
If housekeepers at the Mandalay Bay hotel saw any of the 23 firearms and failed to report to their supervisors, or if their supervisors failed to take the information to the appropriate person in their chain of command, the hotel would be liable for the deaths and injuries caused by Paddock. Businesses, especially hotels and inns, have a duty to ensure public safety and to secure their premises against criminal activity by all appropriate measures. Whenever it is foreseeable that someone “might” be injured the law requires that preventive steps be taken. It is everyone’s duty to act reasonably and safely, remembering that once a bell is rung, it cannot be unrung. So sadly we learned that again at Las Vegas.
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