More than three months later, countless questions remain as to the motive of Las Vegas shooter, Stephen Paddock. To get more answers, petitioners from several media organizations tried Tuesday to have State District Court Judge Elissa Cadish decide to unseal Las Vegas Metropolitan Police search warrants.
The attorney for the police, Nicholas Crosby, when arguing on the merits of the case, noted that potential charges against other people could be in the works. These new developments underscored his justification that the matter is still an ongoing investigation.
Crosby said that no new charges are imminent, but he highlighted that charges of individuals could come in the future, and therefore the documents should remained sealed.
Cadish decided not to release the files -- at least not right away -- giving Las Vegas police one week to further explain the need for ongoing secrecy in the matter. Cadish said she would read what's requested to be unsealed.
Crosby's revelation came as a surprise to most in the courtroom. It was the newest information in regards to the investigation that the public seems to have garnered unwittingly by Crosby when explaining to have the warrants remained sealed. Crosby did not say who would face charges.
Crosby, paradoxically, posited that he cannot argue the facts of the case without compromising what the police are trying to protect. He suggested having an in-camera hearing, meaning one in private.
Maggie McLetchie, attorney for the Las Vegas Review Journal, argued on First Amendment grounds that the public has a right to know what the search warrants contain. She argued that police could say their investigation is ongoing forever to delay access. Since the case is not a criminal matter, acknowledging that the suspect Paddock is deceased, McLetchie urged for transparency.
“Just because Mr. Paddock shot himself doesn’t mean the public doesn’t have a right to know what’s in the documents,” McLetchie said.
Last Friday, 315 pages of federal search warrants were released to the public showing agents sought digital communications and social media accounts of Paddock’s girlfriend, Marilou Danley.
Stephen Paddock opened fire from a Mandalay Bay hotel room and killed 58 people below attending a country music festival on October 1. Officials still have not determined a motive for the worst mass shooting in modern American history.