Last Sunday, the world awoke to news which shocked us all – a lone gunman had opened fire at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, killing 49 and injuring 53 – but now even more twisted facts are emerging.
Just weeks ago, a gun shop in Florida refused to sell a gun to the attacker, Omar Mateen, after he asked a number of peculiar questions and looked incredibly ‘odd’.
He was also reported to the authorities by the store owner following an attempt to purchase body armour and ‘bulk ammunition’, reports the Wall Street Journal.
The store, called Lotus Gunworks in South Florida, turned Mateen away once he started to ask unusual questions about the ammunition and body armour.
Shop owner, Robbie Abell, said:
The questions he was asking were not the normal questions a normal person would be asking. He just seemed very odd.
Mateen requested a heavy-duty type of body armor that is typically used by law enforcement,
[We then] shut him down on all sales.
While in the shop, Abell also claimed that the gunman was constantly texting and had taken a phone call in Arabic.
Believing he had a right to turn Mateen away, Abell added: “If something is suspicious, it’s our discretion. We are the gatekeeper.”
Despite Abell giving the police a heads up on Mateen’s suspicious behaviour, Mateen was later sold a Glock 17 handgun and a Sig Sauer MCX rifle at St. Lucie Shooting Center before going on to commit the biggest mass shooting in modern American history.
Joseph Loftus is a Gold Standard NCTJ journalist with four years experience working for international and regional press.
As well as working for UNILAD and LADbible, Joseph has worked as Liverpool Correspondent for Unsigned & Independent Magazine, as well as stints with the Liverpool Echo and Warrington Guardian.