What to Know
At least 50 dead, 400 hurt as shooter attacks Las Vegas concert-goers.
Philly-based attorney Billy Ciancaglini was nearby when he saw people running toward him: "They started yelling, ‘There’s a shooter!'"
Ciancaglini visits Las Vegas often & had never seen the iconic strip like it was after the shooting.
A Philadelphia attorney walking near the Las Vegas concert where a man rained gunfire down on a crowd of thousands of people described chaos as concertgoers scrambled to escape the massacre.
“I was really close to the middle of it. It was very scary," Billy Ciancaglini said early Monday morning.
Ciancaglini arrived in Las Vegas late Friday night for a vacation. He did not attend country singer Jason Aldean's concert where the shooting took place.
Instead, the Philadelphia-based attorney was walking near the Route 91 Harvest Festival — adjacent to the Mandalay Bay, Luxor and Tropicana resorts— when he saw throngs of people running toward him.
"The first thing I think is 'It’s an attack,'" Ciancaglini said. Then "they started yelling, ‘There’s a shooter! There’s a shooter!’”
The gunman — identified by law enforcement as Stephen Paddock — opened fire from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino around 10 p.m. local time, spraying the crowd of about 22,000 people with bullets from hundreds of yards away.
At least 58 people were killed and more than 500 were taken to the hospital in what is now called the worst mass shooting in modern United States history, police said.
Officials described Paddock as a "lone wolf" gunman.
Concert attendees mistook the gunfire for fireworks at first, but the situation quickly devolved into pandemonium.
“There was no getting out of the way” as people and cars quickly fled the scene, Ciancaglini said.
“There were just people everywhere coming in my direction,” he said. “People were just pushing into each other and pushing the people in front into the street one after another and cars weren’t stopping.”
“You could still hear it,” Ciancaglini added. “It was going off seemingly forever, it was going on for quite a while.”
Paddock killed himself before law enforcement officials were able to locate him and make entry into his hotel room, police said.
Ciancaglini was able to get to his hotel room at the Monte Carlo casino — about five blocks from the shooting scene — where he turned to Facebook to post about being "100 percent fine" and complementing the "spectacular" work of Las Vegas police.
As he spoke to NBC10, Ciancaglini looked out of his hotel room down onto a nearly deserted Vegas Strip. Police urged people to stay in their rooms and away from the shooting scene.
“I’ve never seen Vegas silent like this,” Ciancaglini said. “It is a ghost town like I’ve never seen before.”
Ciancaglini eventually made his way down to the Monte Carlo casino floor where he saw pillows and blankets at slot machines, seemingly for people who weren't staying at the hotel who got caught in the building after the shooting.
There were even some people gambling and at the bar before daybreak, Ciancaglini said.