FBI To Release Pulse Shooter Conversations
Federal investigators promised to provide more insight as to what was happening inside the Pulse nightclub after a gunman started a deadly assault that was the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history.
The FBI is expected to release a printed, partial transcript of the conversations between the gunman within the Pulse gay nightclub and Orlando police negotiators Monday, U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch said.
An FBI spokesman said agents would offer further details about the shooting, including the transcripts, at a Monday news conference near the nightclub.
The release comes a day after tens of thousands of people held a candlelight vigil in the heart of downtown Orlando for the 49 victims who died in the massacre. The victims also were remembered at church services and at makeshift memorials throughout Orlando.
“As a community, it’s important that we gather together to show our support because only together can we move forward,” said Gabrielle Claire, a musician and Universal Orlando worker who says she knew three Pulse victims who died. She was holding a “Hugs for Healing” sign at the vigil and numerous strangers came up to hug her.
“We don’t have to be afraid of holding each other. We don’t have to be afraid of saying to other people, ‘I’m here for you,'” she said.
Meanwhile, more than a week after the deadly attack, hospital officials said four people remained in critical condition Monday morning.
Orlando Regional Medical Center said 18 victims from the shooting were still at the hospital and three more surgeries were scheduled for Monday. The other 14 patients are listed in stable condition.
Lynch said in interviews Sunday on several news shows that the FBI would release a partial, printed transcript of the conversations between gunman Omar Mateen from within the Pulse nightclub and Orlando police negotiators.
Armed with a semi-automatic weapon, Mateen went on a bloody rampage at the club June 12 that left 49 people dead and 53 others seriously hurt. Mateen died in a hail of gunfire after police stormed the venue.
Lynch told ABC’s “This Week” that the top goal while intensifying pressure on the Islamic State – the extremist group thought to have inspired Mateen – is to build a complete profile of him in order to help prevent another massacre like Orlando.
“As you can see from this investigation, we are going back and learning everything we can about this killer, about his contacts, people who may have known him or seen him. And we’re trying to build that profile so that we can move forward,” Lynch said.
Lynch said she would be traveling to Orlando on Tuesday to meet with investigators.
Speaking to CBS’ “Face The Nation,” Lynch said that a key goal of the investigation was to determine why Mateen targeted the gay community. The victims were predominantly gay and Hispanic since it was “Latin night” at Pulse.
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Photo: Omar Mateen, Wikipedia Commons