Following the Orlando terror attack that left 49 people dead several members of the Orlando gay community came forward claiming that the shooter, Omar Mateen, was closeted homosexual that was active in the gay community. Several survivors have stated that they had see Mateen at Pulse, the gay nightclub where the shooting took place, on several occasions and some male members have even claimed to have had sexual intercourse with the terrorist in the months preceding the attack. According to the FBI there is no evidence to support this narrative.
The attack is currently being investigated as both a terrorist attack and a hate crime against the gay community. Several people have claimed to have encountered Mateen on several gay dating apps such as Grindr, Jack’d and Adam4Adam. One man, that went by the pseudonym “Miguel” to protect his identity, even claimed to have had sex with Mateen after meeting him on Grindr.
However, despite the ever-increasing amount of eye-witness testimony, investigators do not believe Mateen was actually a homosexual. After searching through several of Mateen’s electronic devices, including his cellphone, laptop computer and electronic communications, investigators have found no evidence to support these claims. The FBI told the LA Times that they found no gay dating apps, pornography, text messages to other men or cell-tower location data that would show he was meeting with other men in secrecy.
The FBI claims that the people making these claims are not credible. The FBI is exploring the possibility that that Mateen had other, unknown, electronic devices that have not yet been recovered but doubt that is the case.
Witnesses claim that the FBI is attempting to “cover up” Mateen’s sexual orientation but are not sure why. Cord Cedeno, a Pulse nightclub regular, claims he saw Mateen at the club several times in the months prior to the shooting and even corresponded with him on a gay dating app in the months leading up to the shooting. He claimed that Mateen would regualrly send messages that read “Hi” but would not respond after that. Cedeno told the LA Times:
“The FBI obviously is trying to cover up their information, I can go take a lie detector test. I know for a fact Omar messaged me.”
Despite these claims the FBI insists that this is simply a case of mistaken identity. The are continuing to investigate the terror attack as both an act of terror and as a hate crime but do not believe Mateen’s sexual orientation was a contributing factor.