Widow of Orlando Shooter Omar Mateen Could Be Charged by Grand Jury
A grand jury will now determine if the wife of Omar Mateen, the terrorist who shot and killed 49 people at an Orlando nightclub over the weekend, will face charges related to the attack.
A U.S. attorney is planning on bringing evidence against Noor Salman, the widow, two law enforcement officials told CNN in an exclusive report published June 15.
The officials stipulated that the process could take some time because investigators are still collective evidence in an attempt to construct a timeline about Mateen’s activities that led to the attack.
Salman informed investigators Mateen told her he wanted to carry out a terrorist attack, but she denied knowing specific plans, according to previous reports. Salman said she was with her husband when he bought ammunition at least one time, but she didn’t elaborate, the CNN report said.
FBI special agent Ronald Hopper, in a press conference on Wednesday, said his agency is going through Mateen’s history. “We will leave no stone unturned,” Hopper said. “I would call it a hate crime, I would call it terrorism. It’s both,” he added.
Reports this week said Mateen, born in New York to Afghan immigrant parents, had called 911 and pledged allegiance to ISIS, also known as the Islamic State. He also apparently called a local Florida TV station.
“I’m the shooter. It’s me. I am the shooter,” Mateen said, according to News 13 producer Matthew Gentili. “I did it for ISIS. I did it for the Islamic State.”
The investigation into Mateen and the “vast crime scene” is currently underway, Hopper said. The FBI won’t release information until it gets a clear picture. He stated:
Because this is an ongoing investigation, there’s much I still cannot share with you, so I would ask for your patience when I tell you I can’t discuss certain things. We continue to cover many leads, and we want to make sure that when we share information with you, it’s not only timely, but most importantly, that it’s factually accurate. We owe it to the victims, their families, loved ones, and community to bear witness with finite accuracy.
Hopper said he wants the public’s help, saying “we ask anyone who may have had contact with the shooter to report that information to the FBI.”