Wife Is Being Considered For Possible Charges
ORLANDO – Noor Mateen, the 30-year-old wife of Omar Mateen, the shooter at the Orlando gay club massacre, is being considered for possible criminal charges, officials say. A law enforcement official told multiple media outlets that she may have known something about the incident in advance but claims she tried to talk him out of the assault.
The wife of Orlando terrorist Omar Mateen was right by his side as he bought ammunition, and even drove him once to the Pulse nightclub — but tried talking him out of an attack there, according to a new report.
Officials told multiple news outlets that Noor Zahi Salman, Mateen’s second wife, might face criminal charges for failing to tell authorities what she knew before the Sunday attack.
Salman said she was with Mateen as he bought ammo and a holster. She also took him to Pulse at least once to scope it out, according to NBC. But Salman said she tried talking her husband out of a violent attack.
Mateen was seen at Pulse, as well the Disney Springs entertainment complex, earlier this month, CNN reported. The day before the Orlando attack, he was reportedly seen at Disney Springs for several hours, alone.
The FBI told reporters Monday that Mateen spoke with police three different times from the club during the attack, which started at about 2:30 a.m. on Sunday. He called and hung up, called again and spoke with a dispatcher. The dispatcher then returned his call, according to the FBI.
Mateen was “cool and calm” during their conversations, according to police, and didn’t make any demands. Survivors of the attack, however, said they heard Mateen say he wanted America to “stop bombing ISIS in Syria”.
In his phone exchange with police, Mateen pledged allegiance to the terror group ISIS and referenced the 2013 Boston Marathon bombers, Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, officials said. He also referenced U.S. suicide bomber Moner Abusalha.
The FBI said in a statement Monday that Mateen had been interviewed by authorities in 2014 because of alleged ties to Abusalha, the son of a Palestinian father and American mother, who died on May 24, 2014, at the age of 22. Abusalha drove a truck packed with explosives into a government outpost in Syria, detonating the charge.
Vigils were held last night to honor victims of the Pulse shooting. Orlando’s tight-knit LGBT community continues to grieve the tragedy.