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The local News 13 news crew in downtown Orlando was scrambling to cover the breaking story when overnight producer Matthew Gentili took the disturbing phone call. "It was at 2:45 a.m. when I had just received the phone call of someone claiming to be the Orlando shooter," he said. "I answered the phone as I always do: 'News 13, this is Matt.' And on the other end, I heard, 'Do you know about the shooting?'" The caller would turn out to be Mateen — seen here in one of his many selfies posted on the internet.
Gentili confirmed that he had heard reports. "[The caller] started speaking Arabic," Gentili said. "At the time, I didn't know what he was saying. He was speaking so fast. But it was ... he was speaking fluently. Whatever language he was speaking, he knew it. And he was speaking it very quickly. And that is when I said to him, 'Sir. Please. Speak in English, please.'"
That was when the producer got chilling confirmation of Mateen's true motives: "I did it for ISIS! I did it for the Islamic State!" A shocked Gentili then asked the shooter his name, but said Mateen replied that it was "none of my f**king business." The managing editor for News 13 later researched the phone number that had called the station — and it matched Mateen's own cell phone number!
Meanwhile, Mateen's own history continues to confuse terrorism experts
. Daniel Gilroy worked alongside Mateen as a security guard, and complained to his superiors that the future murderer was “unhinged and unstable. Gilroy even added that Mateen "talked of killing people". He added that he believed Mateen kept his job with GS4 Security — which provides staff to Federal buildings — because the company didn't want to fire a Muslim.
But a former high-school classmate of Mateen tells a different story. Samuel King is openly gay and works in Orlando as a female impersonator. He recalled that the killer was always friendly when he saw Mateen in recent years. “He was a jokester," said Samuel, "and at the time didn’t have an issue with the LGBT community!"
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