They have also obtained access to at least one email account, an official said, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss the investigation.Nothing has come up yet suggesting ties to terrorist groups, but the official cautioned that the investigation was in its early stages.The gunman who attacked a Florida LGBT nightclub had attended the club before the attack and had used a gay dating and chat app, witnesses said.Kevin West, a regular at Pulse nightclub, said Omar Mateen messaged him on and off for a year before the shooting using the gay chat and dating app Jack’d. West was dropping off a friend at the club when he noticed Mateen – whom he knew by sight but not by name – crossing the street wearing a dark cap and carrying a black cellphone about 1 a.m., an hour before the shooting.Mina said negotiators didn’t have much leverage with the gunman.“He really wasn’t asking for anything,” the police chief said.
A team of negotiators arrived and began communicating with Mateen, who sounded “cool and calm,” Mina said.Many who had known Mateen continued to come forward, sharing recollections.A high school acquaintance recalled that Mateen was a “regular dude” until the Sept. Zirkle said he and other students warned Mateen that he needed to stop.11 terrorist attacks.“He started acting crazy, joking around the fact that 9/11 happened, making plane noises on the school bus and pretending he was slamming into the building,” said Robert Zirkle, who rode the school bus every day with Mateen in Stuart, Fla., 15 years ago.“He was happy that Americans were dying. I don’t know if he was always a Muslim radical, but he was excited, hyped up. “We told him if he didn’t stop making noises, we were going to beat him up.”Zitkle, who now lives in Tennessee, was a freshman at Martin County High School at the time. He was a ‘Seinfeld’ kind of guy.”The shooting dominated the presidential campaign Monday.Mateen, he said, attended Spectrum Alternative School, a separate public school.“He was really out there,” he said of Mateen. He had people who were cordial with him or would ask him how he was doing. Democrat Hillary Clinton called for stricter gun control and Republican Donald Trump called for tighter immigration rules. You can see where people were dragged,” said Patty Sheehan, Orlando’s first openly gay city commissioner, pointing toward the building and grimacing. Sheehan knows the owner of the club and a bartender who witnessed the shooting and described to her how it unfolded.