Things to Know About the Orlando Shooting
The worst mass shooting in U.S. history left at least 50 people dead early Sunday morning in a case that raised a series of urgent concerns, including the threat of homegrown terrorism
1.Number of victims
As of Sunday afternoon, police had confirmed thedeaths of at least 50 people from Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla. Another 53 were injured in the shooting and some were in critical condition.
2.Shooter detail and motive
Police have identified theshooter as Omar S. Mateen, born in New York in 1986. He had worked at a security company since 2007.
Mr. Mateen’s exact motive is still under investigation. In a phone call to police early Sunday, he pledged allegiance to the Islamic State terror group. He has also expressed strong antigay views to family and colleagues.
Mr. Mateen had been investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation twice. In 2013 he was scrutinized for making statements that people believed showed sympathy toward terror groups. He was investigated again in 2014 amid concerns that he’d had contacts with a former Florida college student who carried out a suicide bombing in Syria.
Both investigations ended with investigators concluding there was not sufficient evidence to pursue criminal charges.
The Islamic State, through its news agency, said that an “Islamic State fighter” carried out the attack. But it’s unclear if the terror group had any prior knowledge that the event would occur.
We were unable to verify the substance of his comments and the investigation was closed. RONALD HOPPER, AN FBI OFFICIAL IN ORLANDO
There were no known accomplices at of late Sunday, though U.S. intelligence officials are assisting the FBI in a global hunt for clues.
State and federal officials around the country initiated numerous discussions about whether new, targeted security changes were needed following the shooting, particularly at locations with large numbers of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. But there was no evidence of an immediate change insecurity protocols as a result of the attacks.
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