LAS VEGAS — Investigators are looking into whether gunman Stephen Paddock scoped out bigger music festivals in Las Vegas and Chicago — and perhaps Boston's Fenway Park — before setting up his perch in a casino hotel and raining deadly fire on country music fans.
Meanwhile, the National Rifle Association joined the Trump administration and top congressional Republicans Thursday in a swift and surprising embrace of a restriction on Americans' guns, though a narrow one: to regulate the "bump stock" devices the Las Vegas shooter apparently used to horrifically lethal effect.
The gunman booked rooms overlooking the Lollapalooza festival in Chicago in August and the Life Is Beautiful show near the Vegas Strip in late September, according to authorities reconstructing his movements before he undertook the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.
It was not clear whether he contemplated massacres at those sites.
Investigators looking into Paddock also came across mention of Fenway Park, Boston police Lt. Detective Mike McCarthy said, though he provided no further details.
The details came to light as investigators struggled to figure out why the high-stakes gambler opened fire on a crowd of 22,000 Sunday night from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel casino in Las Vegas. He killed 58 people and injured nearly 500 before taking his own life.
A federal official said authorities are looking into the possibility Paddock planned additional attacks, including a car bombing. The official wasn't authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.
Authorities previously disclosed Paddock had 1,600 rounds of ammunition in his car, along with fertilizer that can be used to make explosives and 50 pounds of Tannerite, a substance used in explosive rifle targets.
Paddock had an arsenal of 23 weapons in his hotel room. A dozen of them included "bump stocks," attachments that can effectively convert semi-automatic rifles into fully automated weapons.
Paddock's girlfriend, Marilou Danley, told FBI agents Wednesday she had not noticed any changes in his mental state or indications he could become violent, the federal official said.
Paddock sent Danley on a trip to her native Philippines before the attack, and she was unaware of his plans and devastated when she learned of the carnage while overseas, she said in a statement.
Investigators combing through his background for clues remain stumped as to his motive.
The profile developed so far is of a "disturbed and dangerous" man who acquired an arsenal over decades, Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said. But investigators have been frustrated to find that he lived a "secret life," Lombardo said, "much of which will never be fully understood."
A former executive casino host at the Atlantis Casino Resort and Spa in Reno said Paddock had a "god complex" and expected quick service without regard to how busy the staff was at the time.
"He liked everybody to think that he was the guy," John Weinreich said. "He didn't boast about anything he had or anything. It was just his demeanor. It was like, 'I'm here. Don't cross me. Don't look at me too long.' "
The bump stock devices, originally intended to help people with disabilities, fit over the stock and grip of a semi-automatic rifle and allow the weapon to fire continuously, about 400 to 800 rounds in a single minute.
Thursday's sudden endorsements of controls came almost simultaneously from the NRA and the White House.
The NRA, which famously opposes virtually any hint of new restrictions, said in a statement: "The National Rifle Association is calling on the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to immediately review whether these devices comply with federal law. The NRA believes that devices designed to allow semi-automatic rifles to function like fully automatic rifles should be subject to additional regulations."
Moments after, at the White House, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders praised the announcement.
"We welcome that and a conversation on that," Sanders said. "It's something we're very open to."
House Speaker Paul Ryan added his support, as have other top Republicans.
"Obviously we need to look at how we can tighten up the compliance with this law so that fully automatic weapons are banned," the Wisconsin Republican said.
It was a rare concession for all concerned. The nation's largest gun lobby and most Republicans have stood firmly in recent years against stricter gun regulations, even as one mass shooting after another horrified the nation. They blocked background check legislation after the shooting deaths of elementary school children in Connecticut in 2012, and took no action despite intense pressure from Democrats, including a House floor sit-in, after last year's bloodbath at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida. Even gunfire that left House Majority Whip Steve Scalise near death at a baseball practice earlier this year didn't change the equation.
The weekend before the massacre, Paddock rented a room through Airbnb at the 21-story Ogden condominiums in downtown Las Vegas and stayed there during a music festival below that included Chance the Rapper, Muse, Lorde and Blink-182.
"Reasons that ran through Paddock's mind is unknown, but it was directly at the same time as Life Is Beautiful," the sheriff said.
In early August, Paddock booked a room at Chicago's 21-story Blackstone Hotel that overlooked the park where the Lollapalooza alternative music festival was being held, though there's no evidence he actually stayed there, a law enforcement official said Thursday.
The official was not authorized to discuss the case publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity after being briefed on the investigation.
The hotel confirmed a Stephen Paddock made a reservation but said he never checked in.