By Guest Author, Dave King
By now the tragedy of Las Vegas and the 59 murders by a crazed madman have become common knowledge. To make matters worse (if that is possible) law enforcement has yet to answer pertinent questions regarding motive, time-lines, logistics, and general information about this shooter or shooters public. Indeed, it does raise questions when we are told that a single shooter with dozens of firearms and thousands of rounds of ammunition could rake such havoc in less than an hour.
We can ask, “Where did he get all those guns?” Or, “How did he get all of those guns and ammunition into his room?” Or more simply, “Why did he do it?” All of these and many other questions have been raised and law enforcement has yet to provide adequate answers. Indeed, in such a mass attack, the F.B.I. generally comes in and takes over the investigation. To date however, it appears that the F.B.I. has provided little if any insight.
When law enforcement fails to provide answers, “conspiracy theories” quickly take root and the events in Las Vegas are no exception. Current theories include: (1) the shooter was actually a radical Islam recruit; (2) powerful Las Vegas politicians and business people are preventing the truth from being revealed; (3) there were more than one shooter and the other killers got away; (4) the shooter(s) had “inside” help in stock piling weapons and ammo inside the room; (5) the shooting event was actually a liberal attack upon conservative “Country Music Fans” who, as victims, would become anti-gun. Of course, there are dozens of other theories.
It was a horrific event to be sure. It is hard to imagine the sheer terror of being in that crowd and witnessing victims fall and die in that hail of gunfire. No one knew for sure, where the threat was coming from and many thought that the shooter was actually in the crowd and not in a high perch inside that hotel room. Regardless, the feeling of fear and helplessness was very real as people looked to escape and get as far away from that killing field as possible. Escape was their focus.
However, there were some who instead of running away, actually ran toward the danger. Those were the brave first responders who thought not of themselves and their own safety, but only thought of the safety of others. Their sense of duty triggered something inside of them that most Americans cannot begin to understand. Police officers reacted immediately to face and neutralize the threat. Police, medics, fire personnel ran toward the horror in Las Vegas – not from it. Where do we find such heroes? Who are these brave men and women who live among us? In the din of controversy and conspiracy theories about the Las Vegas tragedy, we seem to have forgotten about those that surely prevented even more carnage during that night of horror.
Dave King is a Port Huron native and 35 year veteran of law enforcement serving in various policing capacities including uniform patrol, investigations, supervision, training, and administration. His experience includes serving as a chief of police and a director of public safety in localities across the nation with service populations from 5,000 to over 2,000,000. Dave also served at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to lead the Center’s rapid response team, forensic division, and cold case division.
Dave has been a training consultant to the U.S. Department of Justice, the International Association of Chiefs of Police, and Penn State University. He holds a Master’s Degree from Michigan State University, and is a graduate of the F.B.I. National Academy in Quantico, Virginia. For the past several years he has served as an instructor in Criminal Justice Programs at St. Clair County Community College, in Port Huron.