Las Vegas gunman's girlfriend questioned by FBI for five hours
LOS ANGELES (FOX 11 /AP/CNS) - The girlfriend of the Las Vegas shooter said Wednesday that she had no idea he was planning an attack on the Strip and is devastated for the victims.
A lawyer for Marilou Danley read a statement from her after she was questioned by FBI agents in Los Angeles about her boyfriend, Stephen Paddock. Danley was out of the country at the time of Sunday's attacks and said Paddock sent her to see her family in her native Philippines.
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Here is the complete statement from Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock's girlfriend, Marilou Danley, as read to reporters by her attorney, Matthew Lombard, outside the federal building in West Los Angeles:
"I am devastated by the deaths and injuries that have occurred and my prayers go out to the victims and their families and all those who have been hurt by these awful events. I have faith in God and I will continue to pray for everyone who has been harmed or hurt."
"I am a mother and grandmother and my heart breaks for all who have lost loved ones."
"I knew Stephen Paddock as a kind, caring, quiet man. I loved him and hoped for a quiet future together with him. He never said anything to me or took any action that I was aware of that I understood in any way to be a
warning that something horrible like this was going to happen."
"A little more than two weeks ago, Stephen told me he found a cheap ticket for me to the Philippines and that he wanted me to take a trip home to see my family. Like all Filipinos abroad, I was excited to go home and see
family and friends. While there, he wired me money, which he said was for me to buy a house for me and my family. I was grateful, but honestly, I was worried that first the unexpected trip home and then the money was a way of breaking up with me. It never occurred to me in any way whatsoever that he was planning violence against anyone."
"I have not made a statement until now because I have been cooperating with the authorities. I voluntarily flew back to America because I know that the FBI and the Las Vegas Police Department wanted to talk to me and I wanted to talk to them."
"I will cooperate fully with their investigation. Anything I can do to help ease suffering and help in any way, I will do. Please respect my privacy and my family's privacy."
Marilou Danley, 62, landed at Los Angeles International Airport Tuesday night on a flight from the Philippines and was met by federal agents at the airport. Video from the scene showed Danley being pushed in a wheelchair shortly after her plane landed around 7:30 p.m., although there was no immediate explanation why the device was needed.
Federal officials did not immediately say where Danley went after arriving in Los Angeles. She has been deemed only a person of interest in connection with Paddock's shooting spree, which killed 58 concertgoers at the Route 91 Harvest Country Music Festival in Las Vegas. Paddock killed himself before he could be taken into custody in his 32nd-floor room of the Mandalay Bay hotel.
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Clark County (Nevada) Sheriff Joe Lombardo told reporters in Las Vegas that Danley would be interviewed Wednesday morning by the FBI in Los Angeles.
Representatives from various media outlets were camped outside the federal building in West Los Angeles. An attorney claiming to represent Danley reportedly arrived at the federal building shortly before 11 a.m.
In the hours after the shooting, law enforcement authorities said they were searching for Danley, noting that her ID was found in Paddock's hotel room. Officials later said they had located her overseas, spoken to her briefly and determined she was in the Philippines.
Danley's sisters told Australia's Channel 7 that Paddock sent Danley away to the Philippines so she wouldn't interfere in his plans.
"She was sent away,'' one sister said. "She was away so that she will not be there to interfere with what he's planning.''
The sisters, who spoke on condition of anonymity, insisted Danley didn't know anything about the shooting.
Danley's older brother, Reynaldo Bustos, told ABC News he spoke to her shortly after Paddock was identified as the gunman.
"I called her up immediately and she said, 'Relax, we shouldn't worry about it. I'll fix it. Do not panic. I have a clean conscience,''' Bustos said.
From FOX 11 reporter Phil Shuman:
If Marilou Danley had any inkling of what was to come, she's denying it....adamantly. Her attorney, speaking on her behalf, read a brief statement saying that to her that gunman Stephen Paddock was a ''kind loving man '' who she wanted to spend the rest of her life with, and he gave ''no warning that something horrible was about to happen.''
She flew back into the country last night from the Philippines, where he sent her before he went to Las Vegas, wiring her money which she was grateful for - but was afraid. ''He was doing that to break up with me. It never occurred to me he was planning violence of any kind.''
Why Paddock did what he did may only be known to him, for now. Danley's future is unclear. Her attorney said they're fully cooperating with the FBI and Vegas Police.
Media reports out of Las Vegas suggested that Paddock sent as much as $100,000 to the Philippines for Danley in recent months.
Meanwhile, the Las Vegas Review-Journal, citing records from the Nevada Prescription Monitoring Program, reported that Paddock was prescribed an anti-anxiety drug in June that can lead to aggressive behavior. The paper reported that Paddock was prescribed 50 10-milligram diazepam tablets by Henderson physician Dr. Steven Winkler on June 21.
Paddock purchased the drug -- its brand name is Valium -- at a Walgreens store in Reno on the same day it was prescribed, according to the Review-Journal. He was supposed to take one pill a day.
Diazepam is a sedative-hypnotic drug in the class of drugs known as benzodizepines. Studies reportedly have shown it can trigger aggressive behavior. Chronic use or abuse of sedatives such as diazepam can also trigger psychotic experiences, according to drugabuse.com.
President Donald Trump arrived in Las Vegas Wednesday morning to meet with survivors of the shooting and law enforcement authorities who responded to the scene.
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