Mass shooting kills 50, injures hundreds during country music festival

More than forty thousand were in attendance on the streets of Las Vegas

More than fifty people have been confirmed dead with more than four hundred injured during the country’s largest mass shooting in history at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas late Sunday night (Oct 1st). Jason Aldean was performing to a crowd of about twenty-two thousand when a gunman began opening fire. Aldean and his band and crew are safe.

Aldean shared his condolences early Monday morning via Instagram.

“Tonight has been beyond horrific. I still dont know what to say but wanted to let everyone know that Me and my Crew are safe,” he writes on social media. “My Thoughts and prayers go out to everyone involved tonight. It hurts my heart that this would happen to anyone who was just coming out to enjoy what should have been a fun night. #heartbroken #stopthehate

Shortly after the incident, Aldean’s drummer, Rich Redmond, shared they were all safe. “Many of you have asked about our safety. There was a massive shooting in Vegas at our concert. We are all fine. Thank you so much. Ox”

Jake Owen performed immediately prior to Aldean and tweeted throughout the incident.

Although not performing, country superstar Chris Young tweeted he was hidden in a trailer behind the stage listening to the gunfire. “Spent I don’t know how long on the floor of a trailer behind the stage… know multiple people are dead. Listening to that gunfire…”

The sole shooter, 64-year-old white male Stephen Paddock of Mesquite, NV, has been confirmed dead. ABC News reports that Paddock fired from the 32nd floor of Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino — across from where Aldean was performing — where he was confronted by Las Vegas police officers. Paddock had taken his own life before officers reached his body. Reports indicate Paddock had more ten loaded weapons in his room. No ISIS affiliation has been confirmed as of press time, although the organization has claimed responsibility for the shooting but hasn’t provided any evidence.

Forty-thousand country music fans were reportedly in Las Vegas during the three day festival that had headlining sets from Eric Church and Sam Hunt over the weekend. Many radio stations and media personnel were also in attendance at country music’s largest festival. Brent Michaels, Program Director of KUZZ in Bakersfield, marked himself safe writing, “Just want you to know I am OK. I had left the Festival before the shooting. Scary. I am at a total loss.”

SiriusXM hosts Buzz Brainard, Al Skop and Storme Warren are also okay, according to SiriusXM The Highway’s Facebook page. “Prayers for Las Vegas this morning; Buzz, Al, and Storme are OK. Here’s a clip of Buzz on the TODAY Show a short while ago by phone while on lockdown.”

“Everyone was hiding under the tour buses — the artists’ tour buses, backstage,” Brainard tells NBC’s Today Show. We were there for awhile, and then you heard the rounds going and then it paused and would start again. And then, I don’t know if it was law enforcement or civilians, but somebody started to try to move everyone out. So, everyone in the backstage area, we had to actually run across the actual stage of Route 91 and join the mass exodus of all the concertgoers. It was chaos.”

Several officers from the Bakersfield Police Department were in attendance. One was shot and was taken to a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries. His name has not been released.

Celebrities have taken to social media to share their condolences.

Author: Buddy Iahn

Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites.

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