(By Chris Sharp) Maybe because it’s the job of police to deal with stories that so many police officers are drawn to the stories of Country-Western music today.

But the stories of Country-Western music had the allure to draw hundreds of police officers from California on the weekend of September 29-October 1 this year to Las Vegas.  This was for the Route 91 Harvest Festival where the top Country-Western performers in America came into one of the largest urban entertainment fields in the world.

The field creates a kind of valley among the towering hotel-casinos standing around it.  And the largest towering mountain casino of the area was the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino overlooking the many thousands of people who were attending the Harvest Festival at 10 pm on October 1.

The Georgian Country Western singer Jason Aldean had been on stage for a half hour, the third super star country singer who followed Eric Church and Sam Hunt on the previous two days. Aldean had been on the major circuit of the Country Western tour since 2005.  Even in the middle of his performance, there was the sound of not overly loud automatic machine-gun fire that sounded almost like something out of a movie at first.

But then people started screaming, and diving to the ground, and running, but the machine-gun rattle continued and was now clearly mowing down the innocent people Country Western fans who came only to watch another Harvest Festival.

Up in the Mandalay Bay resort, another crazy man with a gun was killing Americans at random once again. I have already forgotten his name.  Padlock?  The truth is that there have been so many crazy men with guns killing masses of Americans that I cannot remember any of their names now  – their identities have so disappeared from my thoughts that there is nothing left of them in me to even get them mixed up in my mind.

There were more than enough uniformed Las Vegas police distinguished by their yellow parkas to control any normally wrong incident happening at a music festival.  But shooting rapid-fire machine-gun fire at a totally exposed crown of many thousands from 32 stories is not a normally wrong incident.  It was not even possible for a police officer on the ground in this case to fire back at the shooter.

Of course, Padlock the Shooter or whatever his name was understood that, because he planned this massacre for a maximum kill. 

Read more here: A Sharp View: The off-duty police in Las Vegas – a year’s Profile in Courage