Nowadays, news of an 'active shooter' opening fire into a group of people out in the open has become horrifyingly normalized. The reasons for these ballistic rampages can range from personal grudges like the suspect who attacked a Dallas Cowboys cookout party last month, to politically-motivated assaults like the shooting of GOP Rep. Steve Scalise and bystanders at a baseball diamond in Virginia last June.

On Sunday evening, a new addition to this bloody list took place at the Las Vegas Strip in the middle of a music festival. A lone gunman fired an automatic weapon outside, killing scores, wounding about a hundred, and scaring the crowd into a mass panic, before being shot dead by responding police.

Gunshots at music festival

At about 10:30 PM local time of October 1 in Las Vegas, a large crowd was gathered outside the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino for the Route 91 Harvest country music festival when sounds of rapid-fire report filled the air. When it became clear that the noise was the discharge of an automatic weapon, the concert crowd began running for cover or lying prone on the ground to avoid bullets. Police were soon alerted that there was an active shooter in the area, possibly firing his weapon down onto the strip from an upper room at the Mandalay Bay.

Multiple people at the scene had the unenviable position of being eyewitnesses to the incident as it unfolded.

As panic gripped the length of the Las Vegas strip, many took videos of bystanders fleeing or ducking out of sight as the staccato of gunfire went on. Some hotel guests of the Mandalay Bay were able to take footage of the ensuing stampede down below, even capturing images of people prone on the ground, apparently hit by the unseen shooter.

Shooter killed

The Las Vegas Police Department and emergency first responders were quick to arrive at the scene. While bystanders were led off the streets and into nearby buildings, all flights headed for the McCarran International Airport nearby were redirected for security reasons.

Eventually, LVMPD Sheriff Joe Lombardo issued a statement that they have eliminated the active shooter, who was firing from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay. Based on their initial findings the suspect was a local resident who carried out the attack alone, although he may have had a companion, an Asian female named Marilou Danley.

The latest casualty report lists 20 dead and about a hundred injured, with several of those killed being Las Vegas police officers. Agents from the ATF and the FBI have also begun assisting the LVMPD in their investigation at the Mandalay Bay, even as the casualties have been moved to nearby hospitals.