Omar Mirseddique Mateen, the gunman accused killing dozens of people at an Orlando gay nightclub Sunday morning, was a security guard licensed by the state of Florida to carry a firearm, state records show.
Mateen, 29, of Port St. Lucie, had two guns, a pistol and an assault rifle, according to Orlando Police Chief John Mina.
Mateen died at the scene.
He was divorced, the father of a 3-year-old son and had grown angry when he recently saw two men kissing in Miami, according to media reports.
The Los Angeles Times reported that federal investigators were trying to confirm reports that Mateen prayed to Allah during the attack and had pledged allegiance to the Islamic State, according to a senior U.S. law enforcement official.
The official, who asked that his name not be used, said investigators believe Mateen is a U.S. citizen who was born in New York state to parents originally from Afghanistan.
He was a licensed security guard who had a license to carry a firearm, according to records at the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
He has no criminal record in Florida.
The Washington Post interviewed his ex-wife, who described him as violent and mentally unstable.
They met online.
“He beat me,” said the woman, who asked that her name not be used. “He would just come home and start beating me up because the laundry wasn’t finished or something like that.”
Mateen’s father, Mir Seddique, told NBC News, “We are saying we are apologizing for the whole incident. We weren’t aware of any action he is taking. We are in shock like the whole country. This had nothing to do with religion.”
He said his son recently got angry after seeing two men in downtown Miami.
“They were kissing each other and touching each other, and he said, ‘Look at that. In front of my son they are doing that,'” the father told NBC News. “And then we were in the men’s bathroom and men were kissing each other.”
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.
(c)2016 The Orlando Sentinel (Orlando, Fla.)
Visit The Orlando Sentinel (Orlando, Fla.) at www.OrlandoSentinel.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
This content is published through a licensing agreement with Acquire Media using its NewsEdge technology.