MGM ordered to preserve evidence connected to Las Vegas shooting -

MGM ordered to preserve evidence connected to Las Vegas shooting

Credit: wtnh.com

  • Oct 22 2017 18:10About: 1 month ago
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(CNN) — A Nevada judge granted a temporary restraining order against MGM on Thursday, ordering the company to preserve all evidence in its possession related to this month’s mass shooting in Las Vegas.

Judge Mark Denton ruled in the favor of lawyers representing a California woman wounded in the October 1 attack, when Stephen Paddock made a sniper’s nest out of a suite on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, killing 58 and injuring more than 500. It is the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history.

The hotel, managed by MGM Resorts International, is required by the exhaustive order to preserve everything from the hotel’s video surveillance to Paddock’s gambling record to the broken glass in the hotel room, and any other evidence in connection to the shooting.

“This order prevents MGM from sanitizing and destroying evidence of the hotel room the shooter used before victim’s representatives have their one chance to inspect and photograph the room,” said attorney Brian Nettles in a press release.

Nettles and several others represent Rachel Sheppard, who was hit by bullets three times and had to undergo multiple surgeries, the release says.

According to CNN affiliate KLAS, MGM’s lawyers argued the order would be unnecessary, because the evidence was already being preserved for investigators.

“What remains will be preserved, but it’s frankly unsafe to keep (the hotel room) in its current condition,” said Brad Brian, an attorney who argued on behalf of MGM Thursday.

MGM also owns the Las Vegas Village, the site of the Route 91 Harvest Festival that shooting victims were attending when Paddock opened fire.

But the order isn’t exclusive to MGM Resorts International or the hotel. Defendants also include Live Nation Entertainment — which promoted the country music festival — as well as Slide Fire Solutions, a Texas company that develops bump stocks, an accessory police say Paddock had outfitted his weapons with to mimic automatic gunfire.

MGM Resorts International, Live Nation and Slide Fire Solutions did not immediately respond to CNN’s requests for comment.

But earlier Friday, MGM Resorts International said in a statement sent to CNN it has no plans to rent out the suite from which Paddock conducted the mass shooting.

“We have no intention of renting that room,” MGM Resorts International said in the statement, noting the massacre “was a terrible tragedy perpetrated by an evil man.”

“We’ve been cooperating with law enforcement from the moment this happened, which includes preserving evidence.”

It’s unclear whether MGM’s statement indicates the hotel room will remain off limits to guests forever.

Room 32135 provided Paddock with a sweeping view of the Las Vegas Strip, and the crowd of about 22,000 country music fans was clearly visible some 400 yards away from of two of the suite’s smashed windows.

In the wake of horrific crime like the Las Vegas massacre, the question inevitably arises of what should happen to the scene of that crime, and it’s one that’s handled differently.

The Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, where a gunman killed 49 in June 2016, is to be made into a memorial in honor of the victims. Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut, was completely torn down and rebuilt after a man killed 20 schoolchildren, his mother and six staff and faculty in December 2012.



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