Gunfire rang out over the Las Vegas Strip early this morning as passengers in a black Range Rover fired shots at a black Maserati, leaving three people dead, and at least four injured, authorities said today.
Several cars, including the two high-end models, were stopped at a light around 4:20am PST when at least one person in the Range Rover opened fire. Several people were inside the vehicle, according to police.
Six other vehicles were involved in the crash that followed, including the Maserati and a taxi that burst into flames. The driver of the Maserati, as well as the taxi driver and a passenger in the cab were killed in the fiery crash, police said.
Now authorities are trying to track down the gunman, who remains at large after fleeing the scene. Officials say the shooter remains armed and dangerous.
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A taxi exploded during the pileup in Vegas, killing its driver and passenger; the driver of a black Maserati was also killed
The charred wreckage of cars is seen this morning on Las Vegas Boulevard and Flamingo Avenue as police investigate Thursday morning's deadly events
The entire section of the Las Vegas Strip was roped off by police this morning as they continue their investigation
In a press conference this morning, Las Vegas Police Sgt. John Sheahan said the attack was not a rolling gun battle as previously described, saying that the cars were all stopped at a red light.
Sgt. Sheahan said police have video from traffic cameras at the intersection where the shooting occurred on Thursday.
'We have a lot of pieces to put together to establish a timeline as to why this confrontation occurred,' he said.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that the high-speed gun battle could have started as a dispute at a nightclub.
LVMPD officials are still searching for the gunman and the high-end SUV after it fled the scene of the deadly accident. They said the SUV has black rims and tinted windows.
The identities of the three victims have not yet been released, though it was revealed that the driver of the Maserati was male.
Las Vegas Metro Police Capt. Chis Jones briefs reporters after the shooting; victims' identities have not yet been released
A crime scene analyst photographs a car in front of Caesars Palace hotel-casino
Three other vehicles were involved in the wreck, but Sgt John Sheahan told the Associated Press that the SUV in question was gone before police arrived.
Tourists staying in high-rise hotels around the scene found police tape blocking access to the area around the intersection.
Closures were expected to last most of the day, snarling traffic in the highly-popular tourist corridor.
British tourist Mark Thompson, who was visiting from Manchester, told the Associated Press that the scene was something straight out of an action movie.
'This doesn't happen where we come from, not on this scale,' he told the Associated Press.
'We get stabbings, and gang violence, but this is like something out of a movie. Like "Die Hard" or something.'
Authorities say at least one person in a Range Rover shot at people in a Maserati that then crashed into a taxi cab
Law enforcement personal investigate the scene of the mulit-vehicle accident on Las Vegas Boulevard
Early reports stated that passengers in the Maserati exchanged gunfire with those in the Range Rover, but the information was later proved erroneous.
The Maserati slammed into the taxi at the intersection of Flamingo and Las Vegas boulevards, causing the taxi burst into flames.
At least three people were hospitalized, including a passenger from the Maserati. Police said that one of the Maserati passengers is being treated at a local hospital for gunshot wounds.
LVMP spokesman Jose Hernandez said that at least two other people in the other crashed vehicles are being treated for moderate injuries.
Mr Hernandez said that police are looking into the cause of the shooting.
A tourist who witnessed the aftermath of the crash told KLAS-TV the burning taxi looked like a fireball.
'There was a loud bang, and I hear two other booms. I looked out my window at Caesars Palace...and could see the fireball,' he told the CNN affiliate.
Sgt Sheahan said in a 6:30am PST news conference that the investigation is in its infancy, and they will release more information as it becomes available.
Metro Police investigate a shooting and multi-car accident on the Las Vegas Strip in Las Vegas early Thursday morning after gunfire rang out around 4:30am PST
An aerial shot from TV station KLAS shows the true scope of the accident
A total of five cars were involved in the early morning crash; here, the burnt taxi is seen right, and the black Maserati, left
Las Vegas Boulevard is currently shut down as the LVMPD continues their investigation.
The intersection is surrounded by some of the most famous casinos on the Strip, including the Bellagio, Caesars Palace, and Bally's, and is a popular area for tourists.
A spokesman for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, Jeremy Handel, issued a statement reassuring people that much is being done to keep them safe.
'Recent incidents, while unfortunate, were isolated events,' he said. 'Las Vegas is among the safest travel destinations in the world and utilizes the most advanced technology and training to maintain a secure environment.
The shooting is the latest in a series of violent actions on the tourist corridor since the beginning of the year.
Two people were critically wounded in a shooting at a parking garage February 6, and a tourist was stabbed in an elevator at The Hotel at Mandalay Bay February 16.
Don't know how many more will have to die for their whims and fancies!
They were not gang bangers...they were the 1%.
Wait a minute--black Range Rover SUVs---has anyone else noticed how these keep showing up in shootouts? File that thought in the back of your minds and watch with me.