Orlando Shooter's Wife Opens Up, 6 Months After Pulse Nightclub Massacre: 'I Was Unaware'
Just six months after the deadly Orlando massacre at the Pulse nightclub, the shooter's wife, Noor Salman, is speaking out.
Noor Salman, 30, of Fort Pierce, Florida, told the New York Times in an interview: "I just want people to know that I am human. I am a mother."
Although she became a person of interest following the deadly June 11 shooting, Salman maintained she had no clue of her husband's plans to spray the Orlando gay club with bullets, an action that left 49 people dead, and dozens more wounded.
She was questioned by the FBI for hours after the attack, and it's not yet known whether charges will be filed against her as the case is still ongoing, but she said, "I was unaware of anything."
Domestic violence specialist Jacquelyn Campbell, who evaluated Salman's case, supported Salman's claim of ignorance. She said that because Salman was being physically abused by Mateen, it would have been impossible for her to have picked up clues of his radicalization.
In fact, Salman said their relationship turned violent about six months after their wedding, while Salman was pregnant with their son.
According to The Times, Salman was beaten, and when she threatened to leave, he warned her she would lose custody of their son.
But leading up to the attack, Salman said their relationship had improved, and the family even took trips to Orlando's Disneyland together — during which she now suspects he may have been inspecting Pulse.
On the night of the shooting, Salman said she was at home with their 3-year-old son. Mateen had told them he would visit a friend that night, and will not be home for dinner, despite Salman asking him to stay.
At about 4 a.m. she received a text message that read: "Did you see what happened?"
When Salman responded she had not, he replied: "I love you babe."
It appears the text exchange with his wife is one of the many phone interactions Mateen had during the three-hour hostage situation following the 2 a.m. shooting., during which he also placed a 911 phone call.
Mateen was later killed by police, ending the standoff.
Still coming to grips with the crimes of her husband, saying: “How can someone be capable of that?”