Drapes billow out of broken windows at the Mandalay Bay resort and casino. Authorities say Stephen Paddock broke the windows and began firing with a cache of weapons, killing dozens and injuring hundreds.
Drapes billow out of broken windows at the Mandalay Bay resort and casino. Authorities say Stephen Paddock broke the windows and began firing with a cache of weapons, killing dozens and injuring hundreds. John Locher

Gunman planned earlier hit

The Las Vegas gunman originally planned to attack a music festival headlined by Lorde and Chance the Rapper in the city a week before the deadly shooting, according to reports.

Stephen Paddock rented several apartments overlooking the annual Life Is Beautiful Festival, a source briefed on the investigation's progress told the Daily Beast.

A 21-storey luxury apartment block called Ogden overlooks the concert ground where the event was held from September 22-24, but staff could not confirm whether Paddock stayed there.

The concert was attended by 150,000 fans, far more than the 22,000 who were at the Route 91 Harvest Festival, where the worst shooting in US history took place on Sunday.

Other acts at the high-profile event included Muse, Blink 182, Wiz Khalifa, Gorillaz, The xx, MGMT, Haim and Zeds Dead.

If Paddock was there, he decided not to attack that first weekend, checking into the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino above the country music festival site on September 28 and stashing 23 weapons in his hotel room on Las Vegas Boulevard, just a 20-minute drive from the first event's Downtown location.

Busy concerts have become the target of choice for mass attacks, with 89 killed in a shooting at an Eagles of Death Metal show in Paris in 2015, 23 murdered when an Ariana Grande gig in Manchester was bombed in May and 49 shot dead at a gay nightclub in Orlando in 2016.

Sheriff Joe Lombardo told media the gunman had cameras set up both inside his hotel suite and the hallway outside. - Emma Reynolds



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