Florida Night Club Shooter Omar Mateen's Widow Arrested In San Francisco Home, Faces Federal Charges
Noor Salman, the widow of the Florida night club shooter, Omar Mateen, was arrested by authorities after they believe that she obstructed justice and aided her husband in some way before or after the attack. Authorities arrested Salman at her home in San Francisco, where she is living with her young son.
The federal charges were obstruction of justice and aiding and abetting Mateen's material support to the Islamic State (IS). CNN reported the authorities believe Salman acted of her own free will and knowingly took steps to obstruct the investigation into the killings.
Salman claimed that she was coerced due to her abusive relationship with Mateen. However, it was not enough as the evidence showed she knew Mateen was going to do something bad was heavier.
The attorney representing Salman, Linda Moreno, said her client could not predict what her husband intended to do when he left their home in June. Moreno added, "We believe it is misguided and wrong to prosecute her and that it dishonors the memories of the victims to punish an innocent person." Salman was scheduled to have her first court appearance this Tuesday, The New York Times reported.
Federal officials have been wrestling with the idea of arresting Salman for months now as she gave conflicting statements about whether she knew of what Mateen would do before the attack. Salman also told the FBI her husband wanted to carry out a jihadist attack but denied that she knew anything about what he intended to do. Months before he attacked the night club, Mateen added the name of Salman to his life insurance policy and made sure she had access to his bank accounts.
Two days before the Orlando Pulse night club shooting, Mateen left his home angry and was carrying a bag of guns. Salman then begged her husband not to leave their home but he refused. Mateen also texted his wife two hours after the attack asking if she heard about the shooting. Salman replied at one point, saying she loved Mateen.
Salman married Mateen in 2011. Mateen had a first wife but she was able to escape the abusive relationship she had with Mateen with the help of her family. During the attack, Mateen killed a total of 49 people.