ST. PETERSBURG, Florida. – The widow of the gunman who killed 49 people in a gay nightclub Orlando was acquitted Friday on charges of lying to the FBI and her husband to help, in 2016, to the attack.
Noor Salman, 31, began to cry of joy when she was found not guilty of the charges of obstruction and the provision of material support to a terrorist organization, WKMG reported . Salman was married to Omar Mateen when he fell the Pulse of the nightclub. The police killed him after the massacre.
Prosecutors said Salman and her husband scouted out potential targets together — including Disney World’s shopping and entertainment complex — and she knew that he was buying ammunition for his AR-15 in preparation for a jihadi attack. She knew that he had a sick fascination with violent jihadi videos and an affinity for the Islamic State group websites, and gave him a “green light to the perpetration of terrorism,” prosecutors said.
Defense attorneys described Salman as an easily manipulated woman with a low IQ. They said Salman, who was born in California to Palestinian parents, was abused by her husband, who cheated on her with other women and hidden part of his life from her.
Lawyer Charles Swift, argued that there was no way Salman knew that Mateen attack of the Pulse nightclub because he did not know that he would fall to just before the recording. Its intended purpose was the Disney Springs complex, prosecutors said.
“It is a terrible, random, senseless killing by a monster,” Swift said during closing arguments. “But it was not pre-planned. The importance of this case is that if he did not know, she couldn’t know.”
Salman is the statement of the FBI in the hours after the attack appeared to be an important role to play in the matter. In the statement, Salman said, “the last two years, Omar talked to me about jihad.”
She claimed that her husband made no use of the internet in their home, but he did, prosecutors said. They told the researchers that Mateen had disabled his Facebook account in 2013, but she found that he had an account up until the month of the shooting and was friends with his wife. She said that her husband had a gun when he was three, and that he was not radicalized, ” she said.
Mateen had pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group before he was killed.
Salman also advised Mateen to lie to his mother when she inquired about his whereabouts on the night of the shooting, prosecutors said.
Defense attorneys said the FBI forced Salman declaration and have signed them, because she was tired after an extensive questioning and feared the loss of her son. They fought to have it thrown.
Judges asked to make the declaration more closely a couple of hours in their deliberations, and the judge obliged, print copies out for them.
During the trial, the public prosecutor said Mateen, who was born in New York to Afghan migrants, referred to the attack of Disney World’s shopping and entertainment complex by hiding a weapon in a baby stroller, but was chased by the police and instead chose the gay club as his target.
Assistant district Attorney of the V. S. Sara Sweeney showed surveillance video of the Disney Springs complex that caught Mateen walk near the House of Blues club in the hours before the Pulse attack. He looks behind him to police officers in the area before deciding to leave.
“He had to choose a new goal,” she said.
Salman’s lawyer, the jury found by the hours of her life for the attack. She called a friend and her uncle in California, says that she is coming to visit and that Mateen would them.
She talked with her in-laws, eating at Applebee’s and sms’ Mateen. He didn’t respond. They then went on Facebook, read a book, and then a text message Mateen.
“You know you work tomorrow,” she writes.
He replied, “You know what happened?”
She wrote, “What happened?”
Then he sent his last text: “I love you sweetheart.”
Salman not testify in her defense.