A settlement of up to $800 million dollars was announced Thursday for victims of America’s worst mass shooting – a rampage that left 58 dead and more than 800 wounded in Las Vegas.
In the October 2017 massacre, a man named Stephen Paddock opened fire with high-power rifles from the 32nd-floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, unleashing more than 1,000 rounds as he mowed down people among a crowd attending an outdoor country music festival.
That hotel is owned by a chain that belongs to MGM Resorts International, which was sued on grounds of negligence for allowing Paddock to stockpile a huge amount guns and ammunition in his hotel room without being noticed.
MGM Resorts International and lawyers for plaintiffs in the massacre said the settlement would provide between $735 million and $800 million, depending on how many plaintiffs take part in the settlement and drop their lawsuits.
The statement said the settlement does not amount to an admission of liability by MGM Resorts. The two sides said they expect the process to be completed by late next year.
“Today’s agreement marks a milestone in the recovery process for the victims of the horrifying events of 1 October,” said Robert Eglet, a lead attorney for the plaintiffs.
“While nothing will be able to bring back the lives lost or undo the horrors so many suffered on that day, this settlement will provide fair compensation for thousands of victims and their families,” Eglet said.
MGM said a long, drawn-out litigation process would benefit no one.
“Our goal has always been to resolve these matters so our community and the victims and their families can move forward in the healing process,” said MGM’s chairperson and CEO, Jim Murren.
“This agreement with the Plaintiffs’ Counsel is a major step, and one that we hoped for a long time would be possible,” Murren added.
Paddock was found dead in his hotel room with a self-inflicted gunshot. In August 2018 authorities ended their probe of the shooting without learning Paddock’s motive.