A US law enforcement official has said there is no evidence to say the Orlando shooting was a hate crime.
‘While there can be no denying the significant impact on the gay community, the investigation hasn’t revealed that he targeted Pulse because it was a gay club,’ they told the Washington Post.
The shooting killed 49 and injured 53 people attending a Latin night at the gay club Pulse, on June 13, in Orlando, Florida.
There were rumors the shooter Omar Mateen was gay and struggling with his sexuality.
A number of men came forward saying they’d seen him on dating apps like Grindr. An Hispanic man told Univision he’d slept with Mateen, and that Mateen held animus toward Latin men for rejecting him.
Even Mateen’s ex-wife Sitora Yusufiy supported theories he might be gay.
The official cited the lack of hard evidence to back up these claims. There was also apparently evidence he was cheating on his wife with other women.
Furthermore witnesses of the massacre said he didn’t shout homophobic abuse during the attack.
The investigation is ongoing.
Commissioner for the city Patty Sheehan has criticized some of the official responses to the massacre.
Sheehan, who is gay, complained Florida governor Rick Scott did not express the effect this has had on the gay community enough. ‘They said, “We’re not going to talk about guns, and we’re not going to talk about gays; this is an attack on all Americans.”
‘That’s what they want the narrative to be, and that’s nonsense. We need to have hate crimes on the books for LGBTs.’