Investigators continue to dig for a motive for why Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock killed 59 people in a massacre that injured over 525 more. So far, Paddock’s Mandalay Bay hotel room and homes (spread across four states) have yielded a vast arsenal, and searches of all premises and his finances will carry on. However, investigators are now zeroing in on Paddock’s girlfriend, Marilou Danney, a 62-year-old Filipino American. Who is she, and what — if anything — did she know of Paddock’s plans?
- A “Person Of Interest”: Hanley, who was not in the United States during the massacre, arrived late Tuesday night in Los Angeles after a flight from Manila. She was expected to be questioned upon her arrival, and those efforts are ongoing. Danley’s considered a “person of interest” (that is, she hasn’t been charged with any crimes, but authorities have remained otherwise vague) and is thought to be cooperating fully with investigators while they seek more information.
- Her Relationship With Paddock: Danley reportedly met Paddock, a retired accountant and professional gambler, in Vegas. The timeline on their relationship is somewhat muddled. From about 2010-2013, Danley worked at the Atlantis Casino Resort Spa, which Paddock frequented as a high-stakes gambler. In 2015, Danley divorced her husband (while specifying one of Paddock’s homes, a condo in Reno, as her address) of 25 years, Geary Danley. And as one Atlantis employee said, “Then she was just gone one day … I asked some fellow workers and they said she went off with Stephen.”
- How Her Name Surfaced: Paddock used a card in Danley’s name to book his Mandalay Bay hotel room, where he carried out his attack on a country music festival. Those who know Danley were reportedly shocked to hear her name mentioned in connection with the horrific event. People describe her as outgoing and warm, but neighbors say that she and Paddock were rather reclusive and did not socialize as a couple.
- Paddock Sent Her Away: Relatives have provided some insight into how Paddock sought to insulate Danley while plotting the massacre. Danley’s two sisters told reporters that Paddock sent her on a vacation to the Philippines (as a surprise trip) one week before his attack, and this could be related to the $100,000 wire transfer that he recently made to the Philippines. Paddock’s brother, Eric, believes that Paddock “manipulated” Danley by sending her away but did so to protect her: “And as he was descending into hell, he wanted to try to take care of her.”
- A Secret Identity? (UPDATE: The below story has been retracted by Newsweek.) An unconfirmed Newsweek report claims that Danley maintained two separate identities — including two simultaneous marriages (one with Jose Bustos and the other with Geary Danley) and two social security numbers. Reportedly, these identities merged in 2012 when she filed for bankruptcy, although her attorney wouldn’t provide comment, nor would the Social Security Administration. Further, the outlet hasn’t yet spoken to Bustos or Geary Danley.
Given that Danley lived with Paddock at the Mesquite residence where the vast majority of Paddock’s arsenal was found, investigators think that she can help piece together his motive. However, the deceased Paddock can no longer speak on his behalf, and the Mesquite home contained a massive garage safe that may have hidden his stash. Yet authorities still hope that Danley can tell them something, anything, that will help.