Eric Paddock said he was “dumbfounded” by the news that his brother Stephen Paddock was the one who rained automatic gunfire on a crowd of concertgoers, killing 58 and injuring more than 500 Sunday evening in Las Vegas.
Eric Paddock, who lives in Orlando, Florida, told Reutuers that the family had “no idea in the world.”
“We have no idea. We’re horrified. We’re bewildered and our condolences go out to the victims,” he said.
Stephen Paddock was identified by police as the perpetrator of Sunday evening’s mass shooting who opened fire on a crowd of Jason Aldean concertgoers from his 32nd-floor window at the Mandalay Bay hotel. Police entered his room and found him dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Paddock’s father, Patrick Benjamin Paddock, was a bank robber who landed on the FBI most-wanted list in 1969. The wanted notice described the elder Paddock as “psychopathic” with suicidal tendencies. He had used firearms to rob banks and was considered armed and dangerous.
He had apparently been placed on the list after escaping from a Texas prison and robbing a bank in San Francisco.
He remained on the run until 1978 and died in 1998, Newsweek reported.
“I didn’t know him. He was in jail,” Paddock’s brother Eric said.
“We can’t understand what happened,” he told the Orlando Sentinel.
“There's no rhyme or reason here, it makes no sense,” he said. “'He has no political affiliation, no religious affiliation, as far as we know. This wasn't a terror attack. He was just a guy. Something happened, he snapped or something.”
Eric Paddock told the Daily Mail that he and his brother were not especially close, but there was no indication that Stephen would do anything like this.
“He texted me to see if my mom was okay after the hurricane. We didn’t have power for five days. There’s just nothing. The last time she talked to him, no indication of anything. I thought it was some dopey friend of mine making a joke” he said in interview with NBC News.
“He’s not an avid gun guy at all. Where the hell did he get automatic weapons? He has no military background. I mean its his fault that he did this but I’d like to find out how he got the machine gun. That’s not easy to come by.”
Another of Stephen’s brothers, Bruce Paddock of California, told NBC News he hadn’t spoken to his brother in about 10 years, but that he was a relaxed, “never-in-a-hurry” type of guy who never did anything violent.
“I don't know how he could stoop to this low point, hurting someone else,” Bruce said.