Retired Las Vegas officer who responded to music festival shooting shares lessons learned from the massacre


LAS VEGAS — Detective Sergeant Ashton Packe was working a normal late shift with the Las Vegas Police Department when dispatchers told him on the radio to call them immediately.

It was Oct. 1, 2017 and a massive shooting was happening at the Route 91 Harvest Festival. A gunman on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino shot into the crowd below at Las Vegas Village. When it was all over, 58 people were dead and over 800 were injured. Stephen Paddock, the gunman, shot and killed himself.

“He was an evil human being who wanted to do something very bad that night,” Packe tells “For me, this was all about the victims and the victims’ families. I watched people that night do far more heroic things than I did. People who sprung into action and became first responders at a moment’s notice.”

Packe was one of the presenters at CrimeCon in Las Vegas earlier this month. He has since retired from the department and is now the national director of law enforcement engagement at Hope for Prisoners, a nonprofit working to provide support services for the formerly incarcerated so they can successfully reenter society.

Many lessons have been learned since the shooting, Packe says, and he is working to spread awareness across the country.

“It’s made folks very cognizant that the threat is real,” he explains. “Every cop now carries a tourniquet in case there’s a need to stop bleeding.”

Watch our entire interview with Packe in the video player above.


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