If Florida Muslim terrorist’s wife knew he had plans to target Disneyworld, why is she just telling authorities about it now?
The gunman behind the Orlando nightclub shootings, the deadliest mass shooting in American history, recently scouted Walt Disney World as a potential target, a federal law enforcement source tells PEOPLE.
Omar Mateen and his wife, Noor Zahi Salman, visited Walt Disney World in April, the source says. Salman told federal authorities on Sunday that her husband had more recently been “scouting Downtown Disney and Pulse [nightclub] for attacks.”
Unlike the four Disney World theme parks, Downtown Disney, which was recently renamed Disney Springs, doesn’t have security and bag check before entry.
Metal detectors have been installed outside Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom and Epcot since 2015 and guests are selected at random for screening.
Despite being investigated by the FBI twice before Sunday’s tragedy in 2013 and 2014, Mateen bought an an AR-15-style assault rifle, a Sig Sauer RMCX, on June 4 – just one week before the attack, the source says. He also had a Glock model 17 9mm and a Smith and Wesson .38 caliber revolver.
The first investigation by the FBI occurred after Mateen made concerning comments at work. As part of their investigation, the FBI interviewed witnesses, provided physical surveillance, and interviewed Mateen on two separate occasions, but the investigation was ultimately closed, according to a federal law enforcement source.
In 2014, the FBI opened a second investigation into Mateen for his ties to Florida-born Moner Mohammad Abu-Salha, the first known American suicide bomber – who blew himself up in Syria in 2014. Mateen was interviewed as part of the investigation, but there was not enough evidence at the time and the case was closed, the source says.
Over the previous month, Mateen used one of several Facebook accounts he operated to search the FBI and local police departments. He also looked up the San Bernadino shooters and a local gun range. On Sunday before the massacre, he posted about his allegiance to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, writing: “May Allah accept me.” Via: People