Orlando shooter Omar Mateen was fired from his job as a prison guard in 2007 after he brought a gun to work, according to a new report.
The Palm Beach Post reported on Wednesday, June 15, that Mateen brought “a firearm onto the facility grounds” at Martin Correctional Institution in Indiantown, Florida, and was “administratively dismissed” from his position after working there for only six months.
The newspaper noted that a spokesperson for the state prison agency “could neither confirm nor comment on the incident,” as the Florida Department of Corrections is still gathering information on Mateen’s brief employment at the prison. He worked with the DOC from October 2006 to April 2007.
The Palm Beach Post didn’t specify where exactly Mateen, who killed 49 people and injured dozens more during a June 12 attack at Pulse nightclub, brought the gun on the jail grounds, but it noted that “most Florida correctional officers are unarmed in prison because of concerns inmates might seize a weapon.”
Mateen reportedly wasn’t charged with a crime after bringing the firearm to work, according to the outlet, which cited state records.
Later in 2007, he became a security guard for the security company G4S and worked at the St. Lucie County Courthouse.
As previously reported, Mateen was removed from the G4S job in 2013 after his coworkers claimed that “he had boasted of ties to the terrorist groups Hezbollah and Al Qaeda.” A local sheriff alerted the FBI of his alleged comments, which launched a 10-month investigation into Mateen. The inquiry, which included two interviews with the suspect himself, was closed after investigators determined that he did not appear to be a threat.
After the investigation, the Orlando gunman was removed from the FBI’s watch list, which is a standard procedure. The New York Times reported on Tuesday, June 14, that even if Mateen remained on the list, he would have been able to purchase a weapon, as the FBI cannot block people on terrorism watch lists from buying guns.
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