Inside Vegas Gunman's Video Poker Obsession, and How 'Crack Cocaine of Gambling' Made Him a High Roller
Stephen Paddock boasted that he was spending a million dollars a year on gambling.
Las Vegas gunman Stephen Paddock was obsessed with video poker, and it may have made him rich before he staged the deadliest shooting spree in modern American history, according to reports.
The 64-year-old was a regular at the Mandalay Bay's "high-limit slots" room, where only high rollers are permitted to play. He spent 16 hours there the weekend of the massacre, according to a hostess who served him.
Video poker has been called "the crack-cocaine of gambling," and Paddock would sit at one of the machines for hours at a time.
He was focused and methodical and the only thing that moved were his fingers, working furiously as he played as many as 100 hands in an hour.
Former professional gambler Anthony Curtis spoke to Inside Edition about video poker.
"He was absolutely a high level video poker player in terms of the amount that he spent and the amount that he wagered,” he said. “Video poker is a game where you can do better than the guy next to you if you understand strategy."
Paddock was such a high roller that the luxury suite where he launched his shooting spree was comped by the hotel.
Last May, Paddock invited his brother, Eric, and a nephew to a free weekend at The Wynn Hotel where he had "chairman's club" status. They feasted on sushi dinners and saw a show. All of it was comped.
Forensic psychiatrist Dr. Keith Ablow spoke to Inside Edition about his disposition and why Paddock may have gravitated toward video poker.
"He wasn’t playing poker sitting with people at a table. It might well be that he preferred video poker. What else do we know about this man? We know his neighbors said he lacked the social graces most of us have. More than one said that he would say hello to him – no hello back, no wave back.”
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