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FBI: Omar Mateen Radicalized through Internet

Killer reportedly was on recon mission in Downtown Disney

National FBI Director James Comey said investigators are convinced the 29 year divorced father Omar Mateen of one was radicalized “at least in part” through the internet.

During a briefing with reporters Monday, Comey said that at this point in the investigation, “There is no indication that this was a plot directed outside of the United States.”

Comey said FBI investigators see no indication that he was part of any   (terror) network. In fact, the director said , it’s not clear “just what terrorist group he aspired to support.”

FBI sources said Mateen had recently visited Disney Springs, formerly Downtown Disney, possibly as a target of attack.

Former Orange County Sheriff Kevin Beary, an expert in counter-terrorism, said that if true,  the visit makes sense.

“Oh absolutely," Beary said, "Two weeks ago, Homeland Security reported there would be another 'lone wolf style' attack and unfortunately it came true.”

Beary said all of the theme parks are of concern and that he “knows for a fact” that security teams for all the theme parks met at 5:30 a.m. Sunday “already beefing up security.”

A tweet Monday night from a local reporter suggesting Mateen had an accomplice and that an arrest was imminent was flatly denied by sources close to the investigation.

When asked about the report, Beary said in a text Monday night  “not heard that one."

FBI investigators will be looking into  Mateen’s “electronics” including cell phone, laptop and other computers.

There has never been any suggestion that Mateen had help orchestrating the assault on the Pulse Nightclub.

As for his purpose for targeting a gay bar, Comey told reporters investigators still haven’t developed an explanation.

Beary said if Mateen was trying to decide between the Pulse and Disney Springs, it may have come down to logistics.

The blue van linked to the killer was parked on the side of the building a perfect vantage point, according to Beary, to pull off a one-man attack.

“Latin Night, 320 people in the bar, he was looking for maximum effect and he got it.”


About the Author:

Mike Holfeld

News 6’s Emmy Award-winning Investigative Reporter Mike Holfeld has made Central Florida history with major investigations that have led to new policies, legislative proposals and even -- state and national laws. If you have an issue or story idea, call Mike's office at 407-521-1322.

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