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Dan Bilzerian Searched Vegas Police Truck While Under Fierce Gunfire

10/5/2017 10:00 AM PDT

This incredibly intense video shows Dan Bilzerian frantically searching inside a police truck Sunday night as terrified concertgoers ducked for cover from the hail of bullets.

Dan -- the gun enthusiast getting roasted on social media for running away from the massacre -- is seen in this video running with a panicked group and hiding behind an unmanned Las Vegas Metro PD truck ... in the shadow of Mandalay Bay.

The video's intense -- some people are covered in blood, while others angrily debate whether to remain hiding there or make a run for it. Dan seemed adamant about taking matters into his own hands ... as he rummaged through the police unit, clearly looking for a firearm.

It's unclear if the vid was recorded before or after Bilzerian begged a cop for a gun.

Stephen Paddock Booked Hotel Overlooking Lollapalooza 2 Months Before Massacre

10/5/2017 1:00 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Stephen Paddock had his sights set on Lollapalooza in Chicago and even booked 2 rooms in a hotel that overlooked the massive outdoor venue ... TMZ has learned.

Check out this pic of a computer screen at the Blackstone Hotel in Chicago, located across the street from the venue, Grant Park, where 400,000 people -- including Malia Obama -- squeezed in over 4 days to watch big musical acts.

Paddock booked one room for August 1, 2017, 2 days before the August 3 kickoff. Paddock then booked a second room for an August 3 arrival. Both rooms had an August 6 checkout ... that's when Lollapalooza ended. 

The hotel directly overlooked the main stage as well as several adjoining stages. It also overlooks the main entrance and exit where thousands of people file through. And the hotel had a bird's-eye view of the crowd. We're told Paddock specifically requested both rooms be a "view room" which only face Grant Park, where the concert was being held. And here's the scariest part ... it's difficult if not impossible to flee because of Lake Michigan. Sources tell TMZ Paddock had never booked a room at the hotel before, nor had his girlfriend.

Our sources say Paddock never showed.

If his plan was to wreak havoc on Lollapalooza the way he did 2 months later in Vegas, it shows the murderous plot was long-standing.

Hey Kids Santa Claus Is Dead Real Grave Found (Maybe)

10/4/2017 2:54 PM PDT

'Twas 3 months before Christmas and way down in Turkey ... 

Archaeologists claim they found where the REAL Santa Claus has been lurky.

They say St. Nick's bones are under a church ... 

And they found them in a very high-tech, electronic search

The real St. Nick died in 343

Despite the fact he's always hanging at malls, near that big Xmas tree. 

For the record, experts still have to confirm that it really is him. 

The chances they're wrong? It's really quite slim.

So many questions have risen -- is he all by himself?

Did they bury him next to his favorite elf?

And one more question gives us pregnant pause ...

Where in the holy hell is dear Mrs. Claus?

The end?

Hugh Hefner's Wife Supportive Until the Very End

10/4/2017 9:52 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Hugh Hefner truly did have a ride or die by his side in Crystal Harris ... a pleasant surprise to family and friends initially skeptical of the 31-year-old's motives.

Playboy sources tell TMZ ... Crystal surprised the hell outta a lot of people when she stood by Hef's side in his declining years as he got older and became more frail. They actually called Crystal -- who at 26 married Hef in 2012 -- a pillar of strength.

Case in point ... Crystal was at Hef's doctor's appointments and the architect behind game and movie nights to keep his spirits high. When Hef was placed on bed rest, Crystal constantly was by his side.

The family initially was concerned that as Hef got older she wouldn't be there to support him, but she flipped the script with her attentiveness, and we're told the family's immensely grateful for her vigilance.

It's no wonder Hef wanted to take care of Crystal with a sick pad and $5 million long before his death ... she proved herself early on and remained a constant until Hef died peacefully last week.

He was 91. #RIP

Celine Dion Emotions Pour Out in Vegas Return 2 Days After Mass Shooting

10/4/2017 7:50 AM PDT

Celine Dion fought back tears as she returned to Las Vegas to do her show ... just 2 days after the carnage on the Las Vegas Strip.

The singer offered concertgoers at Caesars Palace Tuesday night words of comfort, while admitting it was a difficult decision about whether to even go on with the show.

Then she made an emotional announcement about how she, and her fans, will assist the families of the victims from Sunday's shooting that killed 59 people and injured more than 500.

Gotta imagine ... not a dry eye in the house after this message from Celine.

Mass Murderer Stephen Paddock Younger Brother Has Long Rap Sheet Criminal Threats, Arson ...

10/4/2017 1:00 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

The younger brother of Stephen Paddock has a rap sheet of a hardened criminal ... light-years different from the brother who slaughtered dozens of innocent people.

Bruce Paddock currently lives in California, but he's led a nomadic life. TMZ has pulled court docs which show he's been a regular in the criminal justice system. Among his arrests ...

-- Criminal threats

-- Arson

-- Vandalism

-- Petty theft

-- Burglary

-- Weed

-- Driving on a suspended license

-- Contempt 

It's unclear how many of these resulted in convictions. We know for sure the 57-year-old was convicted of petty theft with a prior, and vandalism. Don't confuse Bruce with Eric, the Paddock brother living in Florida, who's been speaking to the media.

BTW ... Paddock's father was a bank robber who was once on the FBI's 10 Most Wanted List.

Las Vegas Massacre Body Cam Footage Shows Disturbing Scene After Shooting Began

10/3/2017 6:33 PM PDT
Breaking News

The mayhem that ensued in the minutes after mass murderer Stephen Paddock began firing at a crowd from his Mandalay Bay hotel room was captured by a cop's body cam ... and it's terrifying.

Las Vegas PD just released footage from one of its officers working with others to try to determine where the gunfire is coming from ... while also trying to direct people to safety.

The video of the chaos while gunshots continue to sound in the distance is disturbing.

During the news conference, investigators said they still haven't ruled out anything in relation to the shooting. Paddock killed 59 people and injured more than 500 others.

Wayne Newton on Vegas Show Must Go On After Shooting Massacre

10/3/2017 1:51 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Wayne Newton doesn't think the shooting massacre in Las Vegas will dim the lights in venues along the strip ... but he says Sin City's performers gotta do what they do and power through the grief.

Wayne -- a Vegas staple in live entertainment -- came on "TMZ Live" Tuesday to dish on whether Vegas would have a hard time coming back to full form after Stephen Paddock gunned down 59 people and injured hundreds more from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel.

The Midnight Idol doesn't seem too worried about that, 'cause he says Vegas is still one of the safest places around despite the massacre. But he's putting the local showstoppers on notice here too.

Basically ... places, everyone.

Tom Petty Honored by Warner Bros. Records

10/3/2017 1:11 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Tom Petty is gracing a building that was his musical home for many years.

The folks at Warner Bros. Records just rolled out a larger than life mural of the singer, who passed Monday night.

Tom takes the place of Chester Bennington, who was also an artist with the label. As you know, Chester took his own life back in July.

The mural is in a strategic location in Burbank. Singers, actors and actresses traverse the street on their way to various record companies and studios.

Las Vegas Shooter Tricked Out Rifle w/ Deadly Modification

10/3/2017 10:15 AM PDT

The Las Vegas shooter apparently turned one of his rifles into a fully automatic weapon with an inexpensive modification that can easily be bought online.

It appears Stephen Paddock -- the man who brutally murdered 59 people and injured over 500 -- attached what's called a slide fire stock or bump stock to one of his 23 guns before spraying hundreds, if not thousands, of bullets into a crowd of concertgoers from his 32nd floor Mandalay Bay hotel room.

The stock allows the shooter to hold the trigger once and fire in rapid fashion at hundreds of rounds per minute, essentially making it a fully automatic rifle or something extremely close to it.

Automatic weapons are nearly impossible to obtain but a stock runs about $160 online, and it's legal.

It appears Paddock also had a SureFire 100 magazine hooked on the rifle with the stock. The 64-year-old reportedly had multiple high-capacity magazines loaded. 

Sunday's shooting is the deadliest in modern U.S. history.

Tom Petty Dead at 66

10/2/2017 9:16 PM PDT
Breaking News

Tom Petty died Monday night ... his longtime manager, Tony Dimitriades, confirms.

We broke the story -- EMTs responded to a call at Tom's home Sunday night for a person who was unconscious, not breathing and in full cardiac arrest -- he was taken to UCLA Santa Monica Hospital, where he was immediately put on life support.

Dimitriades says Petty died at 8:40 PM PT at UCLA surrounded by friends, family and his bandmates.

After learning Tom had no brain activity, his family chose to take him off life support.

Tom hit it big in 1978 with his band, the Heartbreakers ... which scored hits with "Don't Do Me Like That" and "Here Comes My Girl" to name just a few.

Tom also wrote and recorded "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" with Stevie Nicks in 1981.

Later in the '80s he recorded with The Traveling Wilburys -- a legendary lineup comprised of Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Roy Orbison and Jeff Lynne -- and made a big hit, "Handle with Care."

And Tom recorded solo and had the smash hit, "Free Fallin'."

He was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2002, and has remained a huge touring draw. He just wrapped up his 40th anniversary tour last week at the Hollywood Bowl. 

He was 66.

RIP

Coldplay Performs Tom Petty Tribute With R.E.M.'s Peter Buck

10/3/2017 7:10 AM PDT

Coldplay paid tribute to Tom Petty during their Monday concert in Portland, Oregon as the rock legend was taking his final breaths.

Chris Martin and co. covered Petty's epic "Free Fallin'" with R.E.M. guitarist Peter Buck at the Moda Center. They also opened the gig with a moment of silence for the Las Vegas mass shooting victims.

The group does a good job, although Martin can't match Petty's high notes.

TMZ broke the story ... Tom suffered a fatal cardiac arrest Sunday night and died later in the hospital. He was 66.

Harry Dean Stanton Pacino, Jack Honor Legendary Friend

10/3/2017 7:05 AM PDT

Al Pacino, Jack Nicholson and a bunch of other huge celebs were all under one roof to honor the late Harry Dean Stanton.

The flock of stars hit up No Name in L.A. Monday night to pay tribute. Warren Beatty, Elliot Mintz, John Savage, Henry Buck and Anjelica Huston were all there too.

Check it out ... Mintz gave his take on what made Harry so great while Pacino and Anjelica shared some thoughts on the horrific Vegas tragedy.

TMZ broke the story ... Harry died peacefully last month at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in L.A. He was 91.

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