Lombardo: Strip shooter Paddock took motive to grave

town hall.PNG

Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo says his department is nearing the release of its final report on the October 1st, 2017 massacre, when gunman Stephen Paddock opened fire on an outdoor concert from his Mandalay Bay hotel room, killing 58 people and wounding hundreds more.

To date, it is the worst mass shooting in US history.

“We're close to releasing the complete investigation. I anticipate at the end of July,” Lombardo told News 3's Jeff Gillan and Gerard Ramalho, who hosted a wide-ranging half-hour discussion with the Sheriff Tuesday night on News 3. The shooting was one of several issues covered.

RELATED | Police video shows humanity emerge from Las Vegas mass shooting aftermath

Lombardo’s extended interview comes two weeks after he won reelection, winning 73% of the vote.

The final report, the Sheriff promises, will detail everything investigators know about Paddock, his actions, and his interactions. He remains the lone suspect.

Will we learn a motive?

“The answer to that is no. At this point, it's no. I don't see anything in the near future that would change my statement,” Lombardo says, adding that “there’s some information that we believe that his mental state was degrading.”

Ever since the bullets stopped, critics have scrutinized the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department's response. LVMPD's officers did not enter Paddock's room until his firing was over.

Lombardo tells News 3, they arrived at Paddock’s room as soon as they could.

“I believe their response was robust. I believe it was timely and it was of quality,” Lombardo says, telling News 3 as the firing began officers had a difficult job of determining where the gunfire was coming from. Once they arrived in Paddock’s hallway, "our officers had concern for their safety, too, upon entry of that door. Is there 20 people behind the door gonna be fired upon as they enter?"

RELATED | 518 calls for help: Police release 911 calls from Las Vegas mass shooting

In the aftermath, critics say Metro was withholding information, not releasing details of the investigation as fast as other departments that had to deal with other mass shootings. Lombard says the scale of this shooting, its crime scene, and the number of victims, made dribbling out information impractical.

“We have never made it a matter of practice to release an investigative file prior to the completion of the investigation,” Lombardo says.

A court finally ordered Metro to release the material. The department had complained doing so would cost the department hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Lombardo says he had to divert detectives from their beats in order to release the volumes of evidence.

“I’m comfortable saying that’s around 20 people and that’s taken from their daily duties investigating crime, responding to crime,” Lombardo says.

Lombardo also addressed criticism his police force was slow-walking the release of material to protect the owner of Mandalay Bay, MGM Resorts International. He denied it.

“I’m not in the pocket of any casino company,” he says.

In the meantime, Metro's final report is coming, providing answers, except for the one Stephen Paddock took to his grave: why?

WATCH: One-on-One with Sheriff Joe Lombardo

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off