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October 22, 2018

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Mandalay Bay security guard recounts encounter with mass shooter


Michael Rozman / Warner Bros.

Mandalay Bay building engineer Stephen Schuck, left, and security guard Jesus Campos talk to Ellen DeGeneres during a taping of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” about their Oct. 1, 2017, encounter with a gunman who opened fire on a country music festival in Las Vegas, killing 58 people and injuring more than 500 others.

Mass Shooting on Las Vegas Strip

An investigator works in the room at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino where a gunman opened fire from on a music festival Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2017, in Las Vegas. The gunman killed dozens and injuring hundreds at the festival. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez) Launch slideshow »

The Mandalay Bay security guard who is believed to be the first person shot by the Las Vegas mass shooter made his first public appearance since the Oct. 1 incident.

Jesus Campos appears on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” today, giving his firsthand account of the night 58 people were killed and more than 500 were injured.

Responding to an alarm set off by a hotel room door being ajar for a prolonged time, Campos encountered a blocked stairwell door leading to the 32nd floor near shooter Stephen Paddock’s room.

“When I approached the door, it didn’t open. It was blocked off, so I had to reroute,” Campos said on the show, which airs today. “They’re always supposed to stay open.”

Campos went to the 31st first floor and came back up down the hallway from Paddock’s room. When Campos got to the door in question, he saw a metal bracket had been attached to it, holding it in place.

As Campos radioed for an engineer to remove the bracket, he heard an unusual sound coming from Paddock’s room.

“There were drilling sounds,” he said. “I believed that they (engineering) were in the area working somehow.”

Campos said he let another large, heavy door slam shut.

“I believe that’s what caught the shooter’s attention,” Campos said. “As I was walking down, I heard rapid fire and, at first, I took cover. I felt a burning sensation. I went to go lift my pant leg up and I saw the blood.”

Campos was hit once in the leg after Paddock fired more than 200 rounds through his hotel room door into the hallway.

“That’s when I called it in on my radio that shots had been fired,” he said. “I was going to say I was hit, but I got on my cellphone just to clear that radio traffic, so they could coordinate the rest of the call.”

At that point, Mandalay Bay building engineer Stephen Schuck arrived on the 32nd floor, responding to the call of the blocked door.

“At first I didn’t think anything out of the ordinary at the time. I came from a higher floor from a different hallway in a service elevator,” said Schuck, also appearing on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.” “I rounded the corner for the 100 hallway ... Once I got more than halfway is when I saw Jesus and I started to hear shooting.”

Schuck said at first he thought the shooting could be a jackhammer but thought it was odd that work would be conducted so late at night.

“That’s when Jesus, he leaned out and said, ‘Take cover, take cover,’” he recalled. “Within milliseconds, if he didn’t say that, I would have got hit.”

Schuck credited Campos with saving his life and the life of a woman who exited her 32nd floor hotel room to check on the commotion.

“I told her to go back in because it wasn’t safe,” Campos said.

Campos continues to recover from the gunshot he received in the attack.

DeGeneres donated $25,000 in Campos’ name to the Las Vegas victims’ GoFundMe account and gave Campos and Schuck gifts.

Campos received season tickets for the Raiders in Las Vegas and Schuck received tickets to an Indianapolis Colts game, where he’ll get to meet the team.