FBI investigating claims that Omar Mateen was gay and used hook-up apps
The FBI say they have not made a determination about claims that Orlando gunman Omar Mateen was gay or bisexual himself.
This month’s Orlando attack is the worst mass killing of LGBT people in US history, with 49 dead and more than 50 injured.
Earlier today, a partial transcript of the phone calls between Omar Mateen and emergency services on the night of the Orlando massacre was released.
The transcript reveals that Mateen told police he “did the shootings” and claimed to be holding hostages with a bomb and suicide vest.
Allegations have been made that the killer, who pledged allegiance to ISIS in the call, was actually a regular patron at the club and used male hook-up apps.
However, the FBI clarified that the reports are not yet confirmed.
Asked about claims Mateen was gay, Ron Hopper said: “Those allegations are still being vetted out as we speak and there’s no determination to be made at this time.”
The FBI’s transcript recalled “[Mateen] told the negotiator to tell America to stop bombing Syria and Iraq and that is why he was ‘out here right now’.
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“The shooter continued, stating, ‘There is some vehicle outside that has some bombs, just to let you know. You people are gonna get it, and I’m gonna ignite it if they try to do anything stupid’.
“Later in the call with the crisis negotiator, the shooter stated that he had a vest, and further described it as the kind they ‘used in France’.”
US Attorney General Loretta Lynch had ordered the transcripts be redacted to avoid causing pain to the loved ones of the victims.
The law official also said that pledges to terrorist organisations will be cut out to avoid “furthering his propaganda.”
Lynch said to CNN: “Because this investigation is open and ongoing, we’re not commenting on anyone else’s role in it right now, except to say that we are talking to everyone who knew him, and that of course includes his family, to determine what they knew, what they saw in the days and weeks leading up to this.”