The FBI arrested the widow of the ISIS-supporting gunman in the Pulse nightclub massacre Monday on charges related to last year’s shooting rampage, Fox News reported.
In the June 12 shooting, gunman Omar Mateen killed 49 people and wounded dozens more at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida. Police shot and killed the terrorist after a three-hour standoff, during which he pledged allegiance to ISIS.
— Orlando Police (@OrlandoPolice) January 16, 2017
Noor Salman disappeared soon after the shooting rampage even though she was reportedly under the investigation of a federal grand jury seeking to charge her as an accessory to his crime. Salman allegedly knew of her husband’s plans to carry out the attack and had scoped out the nightclub where the shooting took place. But on June 21, Attorney General Loretta Lynch admitted that she did not know of Noor Salman’s whereabouts.
Asked by a reporter if Salman had left the state of Florida, Lynch said: “Right now, I don’t know exactly the answer to that. “I believe she was going to travel but I do not know exactly her location now.”
It turns out that Salman had traveled to Contra Costa County, Calif., after the shooting.
FBI agents from the bureau’s San Francisco field office picked up Salman outside her home in Rodeo, Calif., law enforcement sources said. She did not resist the arrest.
The charges against her include “aiding and abetting his attempts to support ISIS, as well as obstruction of justice.”
According to a source close to the investigation, the U.S. Attorney in Florida and attorneys within the Dept. of Justice, the agencies, which jointly prosecute terrorism cases, wanted to charge Salman with directly supporting ISIS, in addition to aiding the terror network through her husband. However, Acting Assistant Attorney General Mary McCord refused to support additional charges.
Salman claimed that she had no idea her husband was planning to attack the nightclub in an interview with the New York Times, last November. “I was unaware of everything,” she insisted.
Fox News points out that one of the officers who responded to the massacre was Master Sgt. Debra Clayton, who was shot and killed last week outside a Walmart in Orlando. Markeith Loyd, the suspect in that killing and one other, remains on the loose with a $100,000 reward for information on his whereabouts.
Salman will make her initial appearance in federal court Tuesday in San Francisco.