As the nation reels in the aftermath of the worst mass shooting in American history, more and more details about the horrific shooting that occurred at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla., are starting to surface.
Here's what we know so far:
- The gunman, identified as Omar Mateen, claimed allegiance to the Islamic State group.
Mateen, 29, an American citizen born to Afghan parents, called 911 before the devastating attack and claimed allegiance to the Islamic State, the Associated Press reports. Although the Islamic State has claimed the shooting, according to authorities, it is unclear if Mateen had any direct link to the Islamic State, the New York Times reports.
- The FBI interviewed Mateen three times.
According to The Hill, Mateen was interviewed three times, twice in 2013 and once in 2014. In the 2013 interviews, Mateen was accused of making "inflammatory comments to co-workers alleging possible terrorist ties." However, the FBI was unable to confirm the substance of his comments in its investigation. When Mateen was again interviewed in 2014 for possible ties with an American suicide bomber, the FBI concluded that Mateen was not a threat at that time.
- Mateen worked for G4S, the world’s largest security firm.
According to USA Today, Mateen had worked since September 2007 for G4S, which operates in more than 110 countries and employs over 623,000 individuals. The company reports that Mateen was off-duty during the shooting. G4S is working to determine if Mateen, who worked as an armed security officer, used any guns that were related to his job during the attack."We are deeply shocked by this tragic event,” John Kenning, G4S’s regional CEO for North America, said in a statement, according to the site.
- Mateen’s father said that he believes Mateen became “very angry” after seeing two men kissing in Miami a few months ago.
Mir Seddique said he believed that his son may have been motivated by homophobia, recalling how angry his son became after seeing two men kissing, the Los Angeles Times reports.
“We were in downtown Miami, Bayside, people were playing music. And he saw two men kissing each other in front of his wife and kid and he got very angry,” Seddique told NBC News, according to the report. “They were kissing each other and touching each other and he said, ‘Look at that. In front of my son they are doing that.’ And then we were in the men’s bathroom and men were kissing each other.”
- Mateen’s ex-wife says he was abusive and unstable.
Sitora Yusufiy told reporters at a televised news conference that Mateen beat her during their marriage, adding that “he was mentally unstable.” “When he would get in his tempers, he would express hate toward everything,” she said, according to the Los Angeles Times.
- Mateen used two weapons, both of which were bought legally.
According to the Washington Post, Mateen had a handgun and an “AR-15-type assault rifle,” which he used to kill 49 and injure at least 53 more in the Orlando shooting. Authorities from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives said they believe that Mateen bought the two firearms within “the last few days.”
- The shooting is the deadliest mass shooting in United States history.
The current death toll, excluding Mateen, is at 49. The 2007 shooting at Virginia Tech left 32 dead, while the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary left 26 dead, the New York Times reports.
- The city of Orlando is slowly releasing the names of victims.
As of 6 a.m. Monday, the names and ages of 21 victims had been released on a special site created by the city. So far, those named are Edward Sotomayor Jr., Stanley Almodovar III, Luis Omar Ocasio-Capo, Juan Ramon Guerrero, Eric Ivan Ortiz-Rivera, Peter O. Gonzalez-Cruz, Luis S. Vielma, Kimberly Morris, Eddie Jamoldroy Justice, Darryl Roman Burt II, Deonka Deidra Drayton, Alejandro Barrios Martinez, Anthony Luis Laureanodisla, Jean Carlos Mendez Perez, Franky Jimmy Dejesus Velazquez, Amanda Alvear, Martin Benitez Torres, Luis Daniel Wilson-Leon, Mercedez Marisol Flores, Xavier Emmanuel Serrano Rosado and Gilberto Ramon Silva Menendez.