Fifty people are dead and another 53 hospitalized after a gunman attacked a gay nightclub in Orlando Florida early Sunday. That makes this the deadliest gun massacre by a single shooter in U.S. history.
The shooter has been identified as Omar Mateen, a U.S. citizen from St. Lucie County, Florida. According to the local FBI, the shooter "was organized and well-prepared," adding "he is not from this area." He is reported to have had an assault rifle, a handgun, and some kind of device, and all those killed were shot with the assault rifle.
President Obama has been briefed on the situation, according to a statement from White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and loved ones of the victims. The President asked to receive regular updates as the FBI, and other federal officials, work with the Orlando Police to gather more information, and directed that the federal government provide any assistance necessary to pursue the investigation and support the community.
The FBI is leading the investigation. "Agent Ron Hopper said they cannot rule this out as an act of domestic terrorism and that the suspect may have leanings toward extreme Islamic ideologies."
The shooter’s father told NBC News that “the shooting had nothing to do with religion, but added that his son ‘got very angry when he saw two men kissing’ months before in Miami.”