Las Vegas shooting: At least 58 dead, more than 500 hurt

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Deadliest mass shooting in US history leaves at least 58 dead and more than 500 hurt

LAS VEGAS The silence between rapid gunfire bursts from the 32nd storey of the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino was punctuated by moans of the dying and the injured at a concert out on the famous Las Vegas Strip.

Moments earlier, those very people were among the 22,000 enjoying singer Jason Aldean's performance at the Route 91 Harvest country music festival next to the hotel. The carnage left at least 58 dead and more than 500 injured.

The death toll, which police said was preliminary and tentative, made the attack the deadliest mass shooting in US history, surpassing last year's massacre of 49 people at an Orlando nightclub.

Police identified the gunman as Stephen Paddock, 64, and according to NBC News, he lived in Mesquite, Nevada.

Police said Paddock had "in excess of 10 rifles" in his hotel room. He shot himself before police could break into his room.

The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria claimed responsibility for the attack.

The Central Intelligence Agency said it was aware of the terror group's claim but advised against jumping to conclusions.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation said the shooting had no connection to terrorism.

"We have no idea what his belief system was," Clark County Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said. "We have located numerous firearms within the room that he occupied."

The authorities also believe they have located Paddock's roommate, who they identified as Ms Marilou Danley, Reuters reported. Mr Lombardo described her as an "associate".

His brother, Mr Eric Paddock, said the family was stunned by the news.

"We have no idea. We are horrified. We are bewildered and our condolences go out to the victims," he said in a phone interview with Reuters, his voice trembling.Vendor Michelle Leonard was in a booth near the main entrance of the concert.

"It sounded like a thousand shots," she told ABC News. The shooting "kept going non-stop".

Ms Leonard said "mass confusion" unfolded as people tried to flee the venue.

She said her friend stepped over several dead people as they tried to flee the "scary" scene.

"I turned around and I looked and people just started running. People were just running and falling and screaming," Ms Leonard said.

"I had no idea where it was coming from or where to run to."

The shooting broke out on the final night of the sold-out three-day festival.

"Tonight has been beyond horrific," Aldean said in a statement on Instagram.

"It hurts my heart that this would happen to anyone who was just coming out to enjoy what should have been a fun night."

In an address to the nation, US President Donald Trump denounced the shooting, describing it as an act of pure evil, and called for Americans to find "unity and peace".

PM Lee offers condolences

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has written a letter of condolence to US President Donald Trump for the victims of the Las Vegas shooting.

In his letter, Mr Lee said he is "deeply saddened" by the incident.

"Singapore condemns this senseless and indiscriminate act of violence," he wrote.

He offered the condolences of the Singapore Government to the families of those affected and wished the wounded "a speedy recovery".

"Our thoughts are with the American people during this difficult time." - THE STRAITS TIMES

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