Police, FBI seek public’s help in finding motive behind Las Vegas massacre

LAS VEGAS (Reuters) – As Las Vegas police appealed to the public for help in uncovering a wealthy retiree’s motive for massacring 58 people at an outdoor concert this week, US Vice President Mike Pence visited Las Vegas on Saturday stressing unity and offering solace.

“We are united in our grief, in our support for those who have suffered and united in our resolve to end such evil in our time,” Pence said, joining Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman and other local leaders at a City Hall commemoration for victims of the shooting that followed a prayer walk through the city.

Participants trod seven miles (11 km) along four separate paths to City Hall for an event where security was high. President Donald Trump paid a visit to Las Vegas earlier in the week.

Las Vegas’ Democratic Congresswoman Dina Titus was the only speaker who touched on the subject of gun violence and politics, saying, “Let us also pray for those who have power that they will have the wisdom, the courage, and the resolve to find ways to end the gun violence that plagues our nation.”

The commemoration came as Clark County Undersheriff Kevin McMahill said investigators remain largely in the dark about what drove retired real estate investor and high-stakes gambler Stephen Paddock to carry out the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history.

“We have looked at everything, literally, to include the suspect’s personal life, any political affiliation, his social behaviors, economic situation, any potential radicalization,” McMahill told reporters late on Friday.

“We have been down each and every single one of these paths, trying to determine why, to determine who else may have known of these plans.”

McMahill said investigators had uncovered “no nexus” between Islamic State and Paddock, even though the militant group had repeatedly claimed responsibility for the attack.

A piece of paper found in Paddock’s hotel room appeared to calculate the distance and height from his window to help him target his victims, the CBS News show “60 Minutes” said in a news release on Saturday ahead of a Sunday broadcast of interviews with Clark County Sheriff’s officers, including one who said he saw the paper. The Sheriff’s Office could not be immediately reached for comment.

Investigators have stressed that no suicide note had been found.

In an unusual bid to cast a wider net for tips, the FBI and police have arranged with communications company Clear Channel to post billboards around Las Vegas urging citizens to come forward with any information they believe might help investigators.

The billboards will bear the slogan, “If you know something, say something,” and carry a toll-free number to an FBI hotline, said Aaron Rouse, special agent in charge of the Las Vegas FBI office.

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