Over the next hour, Mateen spoke with negotiators three times, staying on the phone for a total of 28 minutes, while many gravely wounded victims remained inaccessible to rescue personnel.
During these calls, Mateen claimed that he had placed a bomb in one of the cars parked outside and stated that he was wearing an explosive vest similar to those used by the November 2015 Paris attackers.
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Just after on June 12, 2016, more than 300 people were inside the club when Mateen opened fire near the entrance.
In any event, his presence on that list would not have precluded him from legally purchasing firearms, and on June 4, 2016, Mateen bought a Sig Sauer MCX semiautomatic assault rifle.
In May 2013 the Federal Bureau of Investigation declared Mateen to be “a person of interest” and launched a preliminary investigation of him after he told coworkers at a security firm that he had ties to al-Qaeda and Hezbollah.
citizen born in Queens, New York, to Afghan parents.
Callers reported hearing additional gunshots as Mateen moved through the club, and survivors took to Twitter and Facebook to recount their experiences.
At Mateen placed a call to 911, at which point he professed his “allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi of the Islamic State.” Police reported that they had hemmed in Mateen in the bathroom area, and the posture of the law-enforcement response shifted from an active shooter engagement to a hostage situation.