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"Las Vegas shooting witnesses report multiple gunmen dressed as security guards."

Bloggers on Tuesday, October 3rd, 2017 in a blog post

Blog peddles fake story saying security guards ID'd as shooters at Mandalay Bay

Broken windows are seen on a high floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel in Las Vegas following a mass shooting on Oct. 1, 2017. (Paul Buck/EPA-EFE)

An online website that describes itself as "free independent news" is pushing a false story that a Las Vegas shooting victim saw multiple gunmen dressed as security guards at Mandalay Bay.

One of the more pervasive conspiracy-minded claims spinning around the Internet is that the Las Vegas shooting was some type of staged attack or that there were multiple gunmen. As of this writing, there is no evidence any of that is true.

However, the website Neon Nettle claimed that an eyewitness to the shooting reported "multiple gunmen dressed as security guards."

"As the mainstream media in the US attempts to lock down the ‘crazy lone wolf gunman’ narrative for the devastating shooting attack in Las Vegas, the truth has started to seep through foreign news outlets who don't follow the same political agenda as the American MSM," the post, dated Oct. 3, 2017, reads.

The post goes on to tell the story of Brian Hodge, an Australian who was reportedly staying on the 32nd floor of Mandalay Bay, the same floor as the shooter.

The story talks about an Oct. 2 interview Hodge gave to the Courier Mail, an Australian tabloid. In that article, Hodge said he hid in the bushes outside the casino hotel until police arrived.

"There were multiple people dead and multiple shooters. I was just hiding waiting for police to come get us," Hodge is quoted as saying.

Later, Hodge said: "My floor is a crime scene. They killed a security guard on my floor."

While there are some reports a security guard was shot, we are unable to confirm if that’s accurate. And while Hodge is quoted as saying shooters plural, there is no evidence he’d have any way of knowing.

In fact, Hodge gave an interview to the Sydney Morning Herald in which he more fully describes what he saw.

Hodge told that newspaper that he never made it to his room on the 32nd floor and after hearing the bullets he first went to a casino kitchen before hiding in a bush outside.

"I was just laying on the ground. It was like a scene from a movie. The shooter was up above, we didn't know where they were... I didn't want anyone to know where I was, so I just curled up and hid. It was the most terrifying moment of my life."

Hodge also posted on Facebook, "There is a live shooter with a gun in my hotel in Vegas right now, but I got outside safely and hiding in bushes."

More importantly for this fact-check, it’s clear to us the Neon Nettle post puts words in Hodge’s mouth. Hodge never said in the Courier Mail article nor in any other article or social media post that the security guard was a shooter.

And he also disputed saying shooters.

Our ruling

An online blog claims, "Las Vegas shooting witnesses report multiple gunmen dressed as security guards."

The story tracks back to real interviews given by a person who says he was at Mandalay Bay. But beyond that, this story doesn’t hold up. The witness didn’t say what the blog claims.

We rate this claim Pants on Fire!

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"Las Vegas Shooting Witnesses Report Multiple Gunmen Dressed as Security Guards."
In a blog post
Tuesday, October 3, 2017