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Las Vegas: the plot thickens. Was Jesus Campos ‘disappeared’ or did he go into hiding himself after he saw what happened to other witnesses?

Jesus Campos, Vegas security guard shot before rampage, appears to have vanished

3 mins read

REPORTING FROM LAS VEGAS - The story seemed straightforward: The unarmed security guard approached Stephen Paddock's room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, distracting the gunman and potentially saving lives.

With a gunshot wound to his leg, he helped point officers to the gunman's location and stayed behind to evacuate hotel guests.

He was hailed a hero by many, even as the story changed. Twice. Now, the man that many want to honor and who can help bring clarity about the timeline of the shooting has vanished from the public eye, less than two weeks since the Oct. 1 massacre, which left 58 people dead and more than 500 others injured.

David Hickey, president of the Security, Police, and Fire Professionals of America union, said it had been four days since he last saw Jesus Campos.

"We have had no contact with him.... Clearly, somebody knows where he is," he said.

Hickey said he was with Campos on Thursday, coordinating a series of interviews that the guard was scheduled to give about the attack. They included appearances on the Sean Hannity show on Fox, as well as news shows on CNN, CBS, ABC and NBC. Campos was staying in a suite in a Las Vegas hotel, Hickey said. Hickey said he was attending a meeting with MGM representatives in one room of the suite as Campos waited with a security guard - hired by MGM - and another union member in the living room.

When the meeting ended about 2 p.m., Hickey said Campos was no longer in the room.

"When I got in touch with the other union member, I was told Campos was taken to the Quick Care" health clinic, Hickey said. He didn't hear from the guard afterward and announced to a scrum of reporters that night that Campos had canceled interviews. Since the days that Paddock opened fire at people attending a country music festival across from Mandalay Bay, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department has shifted its timeline more than once.

Initially, investigators said that Campos was shot after Paddock opened fire on the Route 91 Harvest festival concert.

Then, Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said Campos was shot at 9:59 p.m., six minutes before the concert began. Finally, at a brief news conference last Friday, he said Campos was shot by the gunman at 10:05 p.m.

Lombardo's revision on Friday was made a day after MGM Resorts, which owns Mandalay Bay, disputed the department's timeline. In a statement, MGM said the time of 9:59 p.m. came from a hotel report that was created manually and was not accurate. Casino officials said the gunman was firing at concertgoers "at the same time as, or within 40 seconds after," Campos reported the gunfire over his radio.

Lombardo also said the guard had been investigating an alarm for a door that had been left ajar on the 32nd floor, where the shooting occurred. He also said that Paddock had checked into the hotel on Sept. 25, not Sept. 28 as had been previously reported.

The correction raises questions about why it took police 12 minutes to find the gunman's hotel room when officers were already in the building and why they were searching other rooms when they were told the gunman was on the 32nd floor. According to a former armed security guard at Mandalay Bay, there are supposed to be armed guards patrolling the hallways of the hotel and that Campos was using a device to log in his whereabouts in the casino. The former security guard, who worked there in the early 2000s, questioned Lombardo's statement that Campos was investigating the open door alarm. "There was no alarm system for opened doors when I was there," he said, speaking on the condition of anonymity because he was not allowed to discuss security issues. "You know how often people would have to call hotel guests if that was the case?"

Read more:

Ellen? Who does he have for his press agent?

Hero Mandalay Bay security guard resurfaces on Ellen in LA for his first interview after he vanished hours before Hannity appearance and MGM said he would tell his story when he was ready

•Jesus Campos vanished before he was scheduled to give TV interviews last week

•Security guard will break his silence on the Ellen DeGeneres show Wednesday

•DeGeneres confirmed in a tweet that Campos had sat down with her on Tuesday

•Campos was shot by Stephen Paddock when he went to investigate the gunshots coming the 32nd floor suite of the Mandalay Bay

•He spoke with police after the ordeal but hasn't yet spoken publicly

•Questions had been raised about his whereabouts but police said Tuesday that he was not a missing person and is a victim

•Campos had prepared last Thursday for a series of TV appearances but went to a health clinic instead

•Hotel said Campos was safe but that he wanted people to respect his privacy

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Add Comment
ShepOctober 18, 2017 6:42 PM UTC

"This whole thing smells fishier than Hillary Clinton's pantsuit".