Las Vegas Police Warn of a “Credible Threat” by ISIS to Attack the Vegas Strip

Las Vegas Strip ISIS Terrorist Threat

The Las Vegas Strip and Times Square appeared on the ISIS video, which was described as unusually long.

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police are treating a video posted by Islamic State as a “credible threat”, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. ISIS posted a video to social media last week asking for “lone-wolf terrorist attacks“. Footage of the Las Vegas Strip is embedded in the video.

Capt. Christopher Darcy of the Metropolitan Police Department heads the Southern Nevada Counter-Terrorism Center. Capt. Darcy discussed the attitude the Counter-Terrorism Center takes towards such threats.

Credible Threats by Islamic State

Darcy said, “I think anytime somebody goes on the internet and makes a threat that they’re going to conduct a lone-wolf or any type of attack, it’s our responsibility to view it as a credible threat. It would be irresponsible not to take any threat as credible, especially when made by a group such as ISIS, who has in fact carried out attacks in the past.”

A representative of the SITE Intelligence Group, a nongovernmental counterterrorism organization, said that the video involving the Las Vegas Strip is unusually long. The video posted to social media was 44-minutes long, though most ISIS propaganda videos are much shorter. The footage of the Las Vegas Strip is described as “brief”.

Threatening Video on Telegram

The video was posted last Wednesday on Telegram, a cloud-based instant messaging service. The video’s first part details the new weapons at the disposal of Islamic State. Later, the video shows a montage of American landmarks — specifically Times Square and the Las Vegas Strip.

As the landmarks are shown, the narrator calls for lone-wolf attacks on America, Europe, and Russia. Since the video was released within a day of the ISIS-inspired attack on a Manchester concert held by Ariana Grande, authorities have heightened concerns about the threat.

SITE Intel Group on ISIS Videos

The SITE Intel Group representative said that Islamic State post propaganda videos daily. Still, any suggestion that the massive casino-resorts on the Las Vegas Strip will be targeted by Islamic State must be considered credible.

Not only are glitzy Las Vegas casinos one of the symbols of America to many people around the globe, the Vegas Strip has a hotel owned by the Trump Organization — and thus have a direct link to President Donald Trump. Those who believe gaming destinations would not be natural targets should remember that the FBI determined a 2014 cyber-attack on the Las Vegas Sands Corporation was launched by the Islamic Republic of Iran. While ISIS and Iran are enemies (one is Sunni and the other is Shiite), the case shows that Las Vegas has been a target of extremist retaliation before.

Virginia Valentine on the Precautions Being Taken

Las Vegas’s civic and law enforcement authorities take the threats seriously. Virginia Valentine, the Nevada Resort Association’s president, said her organization is in contact with law enforcement constantly, in hopes of staying abreast of possible terrorist threats.

Valentine said, “Nevada resorts work in concert with local and federal law enforcement through the Southern Nevada Counter-Terrorism Task Force to maintain a safe environment in Las Vegas. We are in regular, frequent communication on issues that impactour entire community, especially the Las Vegas resort corridor.

Concerns about Las Vegas Memorial Day Events

With Memorial Day nearly here, a variety of special events are taking place throughout Las Vegas, both at the Vegas Strip, in the downtown area, and at local community events. Christopher Darcy said it is the duty of the Metro Police to assure the safety and security of all such events and festivals.

Capt. Darcy said, “Las Vegas continues to be an event destination — one of the world’s greatest event destinations. We have to continue to maintain safety and (create) new ways to ensure the safety of the folks that are attending these events.”