The Federal Bureau of Investigation and U.S. Department of Justice on Monday afternoon released the full transcript of the 911 call placed by Omar Mateen. Originally only a partial transcript was released that had references to Islamic Statate edited out.
Mateen who shot and killed 49 people and wounded 53 others at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando made the call at 2:35a (ET) while inside Pulse. The call lasted approximately 50 seconds.
Orlando Police Dispatcher: Emergency 911, this is being recorded.
Omar Mateen: In the name of God the Merciful, the beneficent [Arabic]
OM: Praise be to God, and prayers as well as peace be upon the prophet of God [Arabic]. I wanna let you know, I’m in Orlando and I did the shootings.
OD: What’s your name?
OM: My name is I pledge of allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi of the Islamic State.
OD: Ok, What’s your name?
OM: I pledge allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi may God protect him [Arabic], on behalf of the Islamic State.
OD: Alright, where are you at?
OM: In Orlando.
OD: Where in Orlando?
[End of call.]
Out of respect for the victims the FBI is not releasing the audio of the call at this time.
The FBI and U.S. Department of Justice released a joint statement explaining why they originally did not release the full transcript.
“The purpose of releasing the partial transcript of the shooter’s interaction with 911 operators was to provide transparency, while remaining sensitive to the interests of the surviving victims, their families, and the integrity of the ongoing investigation. We also did not want to provide the killer or terrorist organizations with a publicity platform for hateful propaganda. Unfortunately, the unreleased portions of the transcript that named the terrorist organizations and leaders have caused an unnecessary distraction from the hard work that the FBI and our law enforcement partners have been doing to investigate this heinous crime. As much of this information had been previously reported, we have re-issued the complete transcript to include these references in order to provide the highest level of transparency possible under the circumstances,” the statement read.
Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) who earlier criticized the Obama administration for the partial released praised the Administration’s reversal.
“I am glad that the administration reversed its decision and has now shared the full transcript with the American people. But this should have never been an issue in the first place. The attempt to selectively edit the record reflects a broader, more serious problem: this administration’s continued effort to downplay and distract from the threat of radical Islamist extremism. This is unacceptable. To defeat terrorism we have to be clear-eyed about whom we’re fighting,” Ryan said.