Why You Are Safe on the Las Vegas Strip

Recently we had a lady plow her car through a pack of tourists on the Las Vegas Strip, killing one and sending many  to the hospital (link).  As always, that starts the discussion boards chattering with fear mongers asking about just how safe is the Las Vegas Strip for tourists? Especially right before a major holiday?

The Answer:  The Las Vegas Strip is always one of the safest tourist corridors in the nation. The problem is that Las Vegas, especially the Strip is always getting media coverage because of its popularity and its history.  You also have millions of tourist in a small area documenting their every move online; “Look, an Elvis sighting” – “Oh, a buffet” and other amusing photos and updates occur every second of the day here.  So when something tragic happens in Las Vegas, in the tourist corridor, it usually  goes viral on social media.

When you think about the Las Vegas Strip and compare it to other tourist corridors, what other tourist area has thousands of people walking it every hour of every day, literally carrying thousands of dollars of cash on them?  It’s Vegas.   As tourist and professional gamblers go from one casino to the next, loaded with cash and other valuables,  you would think they would be sitting targets for thieves and bandits. But they are not.   They walk the Strip in relative safety because they know it’s well protected.

Las vegas is safe

See All The Cameras?

How Protected?

To be honest, when I think about the people walking the strip loaded with cash, I also remind myself that they are also most likely packing some heat.  We have a very liberal conceal carry law here and with that much money floating around, people naturally protect themselves.  So I think knowing that also puts the fear of God or 72 virgins into the minds of some would-be thieves.

Stand on almost any corner on the Strip.  Look up. See the blinking on the light pole? Look closer. See the cameras?  Walk onto any casino property and consider yourself on camera anytime except the bathrooms and your hotel room.   The Bellagio, it is said, has over 8,000 cameras installed on property. These places don’t have just ordinary security cameras.  Nothing is ordinary in Las Vegas.  Pull your car up front of a hotel valet and some of the cameras under the porte-cochere can probably read the school name off your class ring!

Las Vegas security is enhanced because with 40 million tourists coming here annually, we are the testing grounds for declassified military surveillance equipment before it is released to the general public. Not to mention the many retired government police and Military security people who work for the hotel’s security departments are well-trained in what to look for and how to make threats vanish instantly.  If you are the maker of surveillance equipment, where else would you want to burn in and test your most cutting edge technology but a place that is live 24 hours a day with action and activity??

Cameras and sensors are just one part of the security. The bike patrols and people walking around are the other.  From my years as a chauffeur and for general research for this website, I have been told that most of the security force on the Strip is under cover.  You do not even see them.  Do something stupid on the Strip and suddenly you will find yourself being chased by a bike patrol that came from nowhere and will chase you into the hotel.

Have you ever been at a Black Jack table, next to a person being rude, obnoxious or just too fidgety for your own good?  Security noticed.  One minute he is there, the next minute he is gone.  Because of all the noises and distractions, you never noticed he was suddenly removed through a back panel or false wall.

Personal Opinion? I would rather be busted by Metro Police than from Hotel Security. Just too many stories out there about backrooms without cameras that have some very slippery floors!

The incident last night happened right near a posted collection of metro officers and hotel security people.  So they had the scene contained in minutes.  Last summer there was a pool fire at the Cosmopolitan that was quickly put out because the fire department is right underneath the hotel.   We are prepared for it.

Paris Las Vegas Accident Scene

Scene of the accident last night

What’s To Worry? 

Now I am not saying to be lazy about your personal protection.  Las Vegas police are not your nanny.  Keep your guard up, be aware of your surroundings, don’t be too stupid, it’s a busy town.  Just don’t go into panic mode because you saw something on the news about Las Vegas, an accident on the Strip and someone being killed.  It’s not an everyday occurrence, it’s just magnified because of the significance of the location.

What I do warn my tour guests about besides the porn peddlers and the timeshare hustlers, is people pickpocketing. That’s what you have to watch out for.  They usually work in teams and can open your backpack as you are walking and remove just about everything out of it before you realize they were there.  Why are they not caught?  Usually, because they work in pairs. A man and a woman.  If you saw a man walking the strip while digging into a woman’s backpack, you would think they were a couple. So you ignore them. I have seen it happen and I have done it myself to prove my point to my tour group.

So we may make fun of the tourists wearing those ugly black fanny packs on, but as long as they are worn up front, they are being pretty smart about it. If you carry a backpack or case, put a lock on it when you are out and about.  Anything that would stall a thief from getting into it.  The worst are the people who put their bags, purses and coats over the back of the chairs when they sit down to gamble.  That’s just screaming for someone to rob you.

As a Vegas local who spends a lot of his time on the Las Vegas Strip, I can tell you not to freak out every time you see the news about Las Vegas.  Anything Las Vegas related is great for news ratings.  With as many tourists as we have in that small four miles of roadway, it’s a very safe area. Just be aware, be smart and enjoy your Vegas vacation.

Your Thoughts?? 

 

 

 

Vegas Strip – Car Plows into crowd. Kills 1, injures many

Here is what we know so far on the “intentional” crash on Las Vegas Blvd last night.  Just after 6:30 p.m, a woman (now identified as Lakeisha Holloway, 24) was heading north on Las Vegas Boulevard driving a 1996 Oldsmobile four-door sedan, drove it onto the sidewalk in front of the escalators leading into the Miracle Mile Shops at the Planet Hollywood Resort.  She continued northward down the sidewalk with more than 100 pedestrians on it.  She drove across a crosswalk at Paris Las Vegas and continued to drive on the sidewalk in front of the hotel-casino.

She finally veered off the sidewalk near Bally’s and drove about a mile on a flat tire to the Tuscany Hotel and Casino on the corner of Flamingo Road and Koval Lane. Where she was arrested.

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (Metro) released this Statement:

Sheriff Joe Lombardo met with the media today to discuss additional details of the December 20, 2015 incident on the Las Vegas Strip where one person was killed and dozens of people injured after a woman in a vehicle struck pedestrians on a sidewalk. At approximately 6:37 p.m. LVMPD patrol officers were dispatched to the 3600 block of South Las Vegas Boulevard to investigate numerous 911 calls of a car striking dozens of pedestrians on a sidewalk in front of the Paris Hotel and Casino.

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Arriving officers located many injured people on the sidewalks between Planet Hollywood, Paris and Bally’s. Las Vegas Boulevard was shut down between Harmon Avenue and Flamingo Road while medical personnel transported the injured to the UMC Trauma Center, Sunrise Trauma Center, Spring Valley Hospital, and Desert Springs Hospital. One person was later pronounced deceased at the UMC Trauma Center.

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About 30 minutes after the initial incident was reported, an adult female, later identified as 24-year old Lakeisha Holloway, went to the valet area of the Tuscany Hotel located at 255 East Flamingo Road, and asked an employee to call the police. It was believed Holloway was involved in the incident on the Strip and she was taken into custody without incident. A three-year-old female was in the vehicle with Holloway who was believed to be her daughter. The child was uninjured and was turned over to Child Protective Services where they will assist in locating other family members.

The investigation indicated this incident was intentional and as a result of the investigation initiated by multiple details of the LVMPD, Holloway was arrested and transported to the Clark County Detention Center where she currently faces the following charges:

  • Murder with a Deadly Weapon
  • Child Abuse or Neglect (felony)
  • Leaving the Scene of an Accident (felony)

Once the remaining victims’ statements and medical records are put together, it is
anticipated that Holloway will face a multitude of other charges.
This is the 128th homicide investigated by the LVMPD in 2015. The identity of the
deceased victim, as well as the cause and manner of death, will be released by the
Clark County Coroner’s Office.

This investigation remains ongoing and anyone with any information is urged to contact
the LVMPD Homicide Section by phone at 702-828-3521, or by email at
homicide@lvmpd.com.

To remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers by phone at
702-385-5555, on the internet at www.crimestoppersofnv.com, or text CRIMENV plus
tip information to 274637 (CRIMES). Message and data rates may apply.

Tips leading directly to an arrest or indictment processed through Crime Stoppers may be eligible for
a cash reward.