Las Vegas gunman grew up, went to schools in San Fernando Valley

Tuesday, October 03, 2017 10:31PM
While the motive behind the Las Vegas mass shooting remains a mystery, the investigation revealed gunman Stephen Paddock had ties to Southern California.


SUN VALLEY, LOS ANGELES - Former Los Angeles City Councilman Richard Alarcon said he was stunned when heard the name of the Las Vegas gunman.

"I'm just in shock, like everybody else, and for the life of me I can't figure out why an average American kid growing up at that time could do this," he said.

Alarcon remembered Stephen Paddock, 64, from the afterschool playground at Fernangeles Elementary, where the flag hung half-staff on Tuesday. Paddock was identified as the gunman who killed at least 59 people and injured more than 500 during a country festival in Las Vegas.

Paddock and Alarcon later attended Polytechnic High School and they had a computer class together.

"He was smart. He was very smart and he was very noticeable. So that class, that was filled with geeks, and I don't know how I got in that class, but he fit right in in terms of the intelligence," Alarcon said.

Paddock's father was well known to law enforcement. Benjamin Paddock was a bank robber who escaped from federal custody and at one time was on the FBI's 10 most wanted list.

"He never had any contact with the family. I understand that this shooter was 10 years old when (his father) escaped from prison to Texas," Chuck Latting said. "I'm sure the son knew that he had escaped, knew he was a fugitive, but that's all he knew."

Latting is a former FBI agent who tracked Benjamin Paddock for years.

"Once (Benjamin Paddock) escaped, he became nothing. He became a phantom, disappeared, totally disappeared," Latting said.

Paddock also graduated from Cal State Northridge. Authorities are looking into anything from his past to try and figure out what his motive was for the massacre.
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