Dutch man in Las Vegas during attack; over 20 killed, over 100 injured

Las Vegas sheriff giving a press conference after a gunman opened fire on the strip, killing at least 20 people and injuring over 100 others, 2 Oct 2017
Las Vegas sheriff giving a press conference after a gunman opened fire on the strip, killing at least 20 people and injuring over 100 others, 2 Oct 2017. Photo: @LVMPD / Twitter

Over 20 people were killed and more than 100 injured when a gunman opened fire on visitors of the Route 91 Harvest festival in Las Vegas on Monday morning, Dutch time. The Las Vegas police currently believe that the gunman acted alone, and while the motives of the perpetrator is unknown, they aren't calling it a terrorist attack as yet. A number of Dutch are currently on holiday in Las Vegas and witnessed the aftermath of the attack. "We ran for our lives", one of them, Koen Nederhof, said to RTL Nieuws.

The gunman opened fire on visitors to the open-air festival from the window of a hotel room on the 32nd floor. The gunman was killed, and the situation is now under control, the Las Vegas police said in a press conference. They gunman was a resident of Las Vegas. The police are currently looking for his "companion", a woman with an Asian appearance known as Marylou. 

Koen Nederhof, a journalist for the Telegraaf, is on holiday in Las Vegas with his girlfriend. They were sitting on a terrace near the hotel where the gunman shot from. "We first saw the ambulances, and then the live music was turned off", he said to RTL Nieuws. "Everyone was watching the TV with big eyes. When the rumor came that shots were fired in a hotel near us, you suddenly saw total panic in everyone." People tried to flee and there was something of a stampede. "We ran for our lives. With hundreds of people, we ran across the street to flee."

Koen and his girlfriend ran into a restaurant, where the hid in the kitchen for a while. "When we thought it was safe, we went outside through the back door and then to a hotel. We are now with a group of 40 men, watching on television what's going on." Koen is not afraid. "But it is very intense to experience this. Around me, people are shaking and crying, it's quite traumatic."

Dennis van de Snepscheut and his girlfriend were also on a terrace when the panic broke out. "We saw police cars passing by one after the other. They kept increasing and drove at full speed against the traffic", he said to the broadcaster. "At first we thought that a fight might have broken out at a hockey match in the area. But because the police cars kept coming, we went to our hotel room." They too followed events on the television, and a short time later the hotel announced that guests should stay in their rooms. "But I'm not worried, we are safe. There are police officers at the doors of all hotels, to keep people out who do not belong there."

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