In the wake of a deadly mass shooting in Las Vegas on Sunday night that killed at least 58 people and wounded upwards of 500 more, President Donald Trump called the attack “an act of pure evil” and offered condolences to families of the victims.
“We are joined together today in sadness, shock and grief,” Trump said during a White House address.
There were roughly 22,000 country music fans in attendance at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival when the suspected gunman, identified as 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, opened fire from the 32nd floor of the nearby Mandalay Bay hotel.
Witnesses described “nonstop gunfire” that sent terrified concertgoers scrambling for cover, collapsing to the ground as gunshots rang out and sprinting away in between bursts. The attack was the deadliest shooting in modern U.S. history.
Trump praised the efforts of emergency workers and the officers of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) for their work in treating the injured and tracking down the shooter.
“To have found the shooter so quickly after the first shots were fired is something for which we will always be thankful and grateful,” he said.
Trump also indicated that he would travel to Las Vegas on Wednesday “to meet with law enforcement, first responders and the families of victims.”
“Our unity cannot be shattered by evil,” he said. “Our bonds cannot be broken by violence. And though we feel such great anger at the senseless murder of our fellow citizens, it is our love that defines us today – and always will, forever.”
LVMPD Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said at a news conference Monday morning that the gunman’s motive remains unclear.
“I can’t get into the mind of a psychopath,” he said.
Paddock reportedly check into the hotel on Thursday and brought the guns in himself. His criminal record was clean, save for a minor citation, and he worked as an accountant.