In a 21st Century Wire report, Shawn Helton asks bold questions about oddities surrounding the hotel security staffer who was supposedly the hero in the October 2017 mass shooting at the Route 91 Harvest music festival in Las Vegas that left 58 people dead and 546 injured. Why didn’t hotel security notice the gunman mounting security cameras? Why was there no footage of the gunman carrying a massive number of weapons to the hotel room? Why has the timeline of events provided by law enforcement inconsistent? Initial confusion following mass shootings is understandable, Helton acknowledged, however the shock and awe perpetrated by the media shouldn’t deter law enforcement, journalists, and public from searching for the truth.
The shooter, Stephen Paddock, initially checked into Mandalay Bay on September 25, a full six days before the attack; however, police and FBI initially stated that he arrived on the 28th. During that time, he allegedly managed to sneak 23 weapons, including 2 tripods, into his 32nd floor hotel room through a service elevator, and allegedly mounted security cameras outside his room, all while keeping his “Do Not Disturb” sign up. This is interesting to note as most hotels have protocols in place which alert staff when rooms don’t want to be disturbed for long periods of time (more than 24 hours), let alone several days. By law and practice, hotels can and do check in on guests to ensure the safety of the hotel and the guest. These facts leave two huge questions: where is the hotel security video showing Paddock using the service elevator, and why didn’t hotel staff follow protocol and check the room after such a long period of “do not disturb?”
The confusion surrounding supposed hotel security hero Jesus Campos raises even more questions as to the validity of investigating and reporting. The police and FBI have changed their story on what the series of events were, the timeline, and even stranger, had assigned a private guard to Campos’ home after the attack. Authorities claim Campos was shot in the leg during his confrontation with Paddock, yet Campos managed a trip to Mexico just days after the shooting. It’s unclear why law enforcement would allow him to leave the country during an active investigation. Campos was set to break his silence with several mainstream media interviews several weeks after the attack, but when the media gathered in the room to speak with him he disappeared without a word and his whereabouts were unknown the following day. It was later suggested that Campos was under a gag order. The New York Post reported that, state records “showed that the 25-year-old is actually not registered as a security guard with Nevada’s Private Investigator’s Licensing Board.” None of these questions have been answered.
There was no shortage of reporting on this shooting in the corporate media in the weeks following the attack but like most other events of its kind, interest waned, and questions fell to the wayside. Most of the attention focused on speculation about the shooter’s motives and politicians jockeying for position in the debate over gun control.
Chris Perez, “Jesus Campos Reportedly Left the Country Days after Vegas Massacre,” New York Post, New York Post, October 26, 2017, http://nypost.com/2017/10/26/jesus-campos-reportedly-left-the-country-days-after-vegas-massacre/.
Shawn Helton, “The Las Vegas Mass Shooting – More to the Story Than We’ve Been Told” 21st Century Wire, October 12, 2017, http://21stcenturywire.com/2017/10/12/the-las-vegas-mass-shooting-more-to-the-story-than-weve-been-told/.
Student Researchers: Kun Qin and Stephanie Rickher (Diablo Valley College)
Faculty Evaluator: Mickey Huff (Diablo Valley College)