Fatal Shooting at MGM National Harbor Sparks Fear, Police Launch Manhunt

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The reverberations of a fatal shooting still echo around MGM National Harbor, located a few miles from the heart of the nation’s capital. As the Maryland morning sun rose on Saturday, May 11, 2024, the palpable excitement typically associated with the casino gave way to shock and horror. The catastrophic event unfolded in the early hours of Saturday and despite the frenzied investigations, the police are still on the hunt for a suspect.

The scenic MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland usually brims with life; gamblers eyeing their next win, fun-seekers exploring the integrated resort, families and individuals unwinding at the luxurious facility. But that day, death overshadowed life, casting a pall over the vibrant atmosphere. An unidentified man was tragically gunned down in the flush of morning. The Prince George’s County Police Department’s Homicide Unit paints a tragic picture of the adult male succumbing to his injuries, his identity yet undisclosed pending notification of his family.

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The incident unraveled roughly around 4:50 am, when a jarring call from the casino security alerted the law enforcement to a shooting in the parking lot. The police arrived on the scene to find a man struggling between life and death, his body riddled with gunshots. Despite the heroic efforts from first responders, the man took his final breath on the cold cement of the parking garage.

As investigations unfold, detectives doggedly pursue every piece of information, in an attempt to track and apprehend the perpetrator or perpetrators. Meanwhile, the Prince George’s County Crime Solvers urge anyone with valuable information to aid in the investigation either via call or through their website.

MGM National Harbor, a stone’s throw from Alexandria and a couple of miles from the Washington, DC border, is not a stranger to an uptick in crime rate, particularly in the surrounding National Harbor area. Crime presumably involving the younger demographic – vandalism, theft, and bad behavior – prompted the county to enact a weekend curfew, imposing restrictions on unsupervised persons aged 16 and under, in late April. Though the recent casino shooting may not be related to this demographic, it undeniably colors the perception of the safety of National Harbor, traditionally seen as a bustling hub for entertainment, shopping, and hospitality.

Local businesses experience the trickle-down effect of rising crime rates, noticing a significant dip in clientele this year compared to the last. The shadow of this downturn also looms large over the MGM Casino, which despite earning a whopping $834.1 million from players last year (one of the highest outside Las Vegas), marked a nearly 6% revenue reduction from 2022.

In line with customary protocol, MGM National Harbor refrained from commenting on the shooting. This year continues the declining trend in gaming revenue at MGM. With revenue in April at $276 million compared to $286 million at the same time last year, it seems a tough road lies ahead for the casino to regain its former glory and reassure patrons of their safety and enjoyment.