Law enforcement authorities today lowered the death toll from the weekend massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando to 49, the deadliest mass shooting in American history, explaining that the shooter had been counted in the original tally.
“We don’t include the shooter as a victim,” FBI special agent Paul Wysopal told an early morning press conference, revising the toll.
In the early hours yesterday, Omar Seddique Mateen, a 29-year-old New York native and son of Afghan immigrants, burst into the Pulse nightclub and opened fire. Beyond the dead, more than 50 people were wounded in the carnage.
The situation evolved into a hostage situation before he was killed in a shootout with police.
Wysopal said the families of about half of the victims have been notified.