Las Vegas police fire officer who hesitated during shooting

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Las Vegas police confirmed Tuesday that the department fired a veteran officer who froze in the hallway of a Las Vegas Strip hotel during a 2017 mass shooting as a gunman on the floor above opened fire on a country music festival.

Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department spokesman Officer Larry Hadfield confirmed Tuesday night that Officer Cordell Hendrex was fired March 20. Hadfield did not offer additional details or answer questions regarding an internal review of the actions of Hendrex and other officers that night.

Police union president Steve Grammas told The Associated Press in an email that Hendrex had been fired because of his actions during the Oct. 1, 2017, mass shooting.

Hendrex acknowledged in a police report that he was "terrified with fear" as the gunman above killed 58 people in the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.

"I froze right there in the middle of the hall for how long I can't say," he wrote in the report.

14 PHOTOS
What we know about Las Vegas shooting suspect Stephen Paddock
See Gallery
What we know about Las Vegas shooting suspect Stephen Paddock
Stephen Paddock, 64, allegedly opened fire from the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino on the Route 91 Harvest country music festival, leaving at least 59 people dead and hundreds injured.

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

He reportedly used a hammer-like tool to break out two windows at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino.

(Photo by David Becker/Getty Images)

Stephen Paddock was reportedly a high-stakes gambler that lived in a retirement community in Mesquite, Nevada.

(REUTERS/Las Vegas Sun/Steve Marcus)

His father was Benjamin Hoskins Paddock, a bank robber and former FBI Most Wanted Fugitive.

(FBI/Handout via REUTERS)

Paddock killed himself before authorities breached his hotel room and investigators say he acted alone.

(REUTERS/Las Vegas Sun/Steve Marcus)

Paddock's girlfriend, Marilou Danley, was in the Philippines at the time of the shooting but he reportedly used her identification to check in at the Mandalay Bay hotel.

(Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department/Handout via REUTERS)

Stephen Paddock lived in this home in Melbourne, Florida from 2013 to 2015.

(Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel/TNS via Getty Images)

Police said Paddock had no criminal record.

(Photo by David Becker/Getty Images)

NBC News reported that Paddock made several large gambling transactions in recent weeks, but that it wasn't clear if they were wins or losses.

(Photo by David Becker/Getty Images)

Paddock reportedly purchased firearms at  Guns & Guitars, a gun shop in Mesquite, Nevada. 

(Photo by Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images)

Paddock's brother, Eric, said his sibling belonged to no political or religious organizations, and had no history of mental illness.

 (Photo by Marcus Yam/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

Paddock's brother described him as a "wealthy guy" and said he liked to play video poker and go on cruises.

(Photo by Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images)

He worked as an accountant and had real estate investments, according to the Washington Post. 

(Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Paddock had his pilot license and owned at least one plane, according to Reuters.

(REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Police body camera video released by the department shows Hendrex, along with a rookie officer and three hotel security officers, waiting in the hallway of the 31st floor in the Mandalay Bay casino-resort for about five minutes before moving to a stairwell leading to the 32nd floor, where the gunman was raining bullets on to the crowd above.

They remained in the stairwell for at least 15 minutes, when the video clip ends.

A phone call to a publicly listed number for Hendrex was not answered Tuesday night.

Grammas told the Las Vegas Review-Journal, which first reported Hendrex's firing, that the union does not believe the officer should have been fired and is fighting to get him reinstated.

News of Hendrex's firing comes on the heels of the firing of four police officers in Florida as a result of their inaction to the 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, where a gunman killed 17 people.

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.