Jason Aldean Ran from Stage When Las Vegas Gunman Opened Fire: 'Tonight Has Been Beyond Horrific'
Video footage shows the harrowing moments country singer Jason Aldean ran from the stage during his Las Vegas show on Sunday after a gunman opened fire, killing at least 50 people and injuring over 400.
A clip uploaded to Twitter showed the 40-year-old singer performing as gunfire broke out at the country music festival. Soon, the music comes to an abrupt halt and Aldean is seen fleeing the stage.
“Tonight has been beyond horrific. I still don’t know what to say but wanted to let everyone know that me and my crew are safe,” Aldean wrote in an Instagram post in the wake of the shooting.
“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.”
The shooting began just as Aldean kicked off his show on the final day of the three-day Route 91 Harvest Festival, the Washington Post reports.
Witnesses reported that a gunman opened fire – reportedly with a fully automatic weapon – from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Casino.
Police later found the shooter, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, dead in a Mandalay Bay hotel room, Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said. Paddock is believed to have killed himself.
Shortly after the shooting, Aldean’s wife, Brittany, reassured fans in an Instagram post, writing, “We are safe … our angels were definitely watching over us tonight. No words for what happened … Just horrific. Praying for everyone.”
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department announced Sunday night that an active shooter has been reported near the casino and advised people to avoid the area.
Authorities shut down the south end of the strip as well as freeway traffic on the I-15 from Tropicana to Russell Road. Some flights destined for McCarran Airport were also diverted due to the reported shooting, according to the airport.
A video posted by a Twitter user showed a crowd of people fleeing from a nearby music festival after the shots were reported. Police said they believe the shooting to be “a solo act” done by “a lone wolf attacker,” according to the Los Angeles Times.
How to Help and Learn About Loved Ones
Friends and family are asked to report missing people believed to be connected to the shooting using the hotline 1-800-536-9488.
Anyone with photo or video evidence of the shooting is asked to call 1-800-CALL-FBI.
The city of Las Vegas has established a Family Reunification Center to help connect relatives with the more than 500 people who were injured.
In addition, city officials urged those locally who wish to donate blood to visit one of two donation centers operated by United Blood Services, either at 6930 W. Charleston in Las Vegas or at 601 Whitney Ranch Drive in Henderson, Nevada.