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Twitter, Google, Facebook Don't Blame Us for Paris Attacks ... We Wipe Out Terrorists From Our Network

6/15/2016 1:47 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Breaking News

0615_fb-twitter_google_paris_attacks_gettyTwitter, Google and Facebook vigorously eradicate accounts created by terrorists networks ... the tech giants say in response to a lawsuit claiming they enable ISIS' terrorist activities.

TMZ broke the story ... a victim's father is holding the tech companies responsible for fueling the Paris attacks back in November, claiming the social networks make it easy to maintain accounts that promote ISIS' extremist propaganda.

A spokesperson for Twitter tells TMZ ... the lawsuit is without merit, adding they condemn acts of violence for which ISIS claims credit and actively work to eliminate any presence promoting terrorism.

Google tells us through a spokesperson, YouTube (which they own) terminates flagged accounts run by terrorist organizations. They declined further comment on the lawsuit.

Facebook says their global team aggressively works to remove terrorism content as soon as they become aware of it. They expressed their sympathies but will fight the lawsuit.

Paris Attacks Victim's Family Sues Social Media Giants You Let Terrorism Spread

6/15/2016 8:42 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0615-paris-attacks-lawsuit-twitter-facebook-google-GETTY-01Twitter, Google and Facebook are responsible for the Paris attacks because they let ISIS spread extremist propaganda and recruit on their social networks ... so says a victim's father in a new suit.

According to legal docs obtained by TMZ, Reynaldo Gonzalez is suing the social media giants for enabling ISIS to explode into the most feared terrorist group in the world.

Reynaldo's daughter, Nohemi, was one of the 130 victims killed in coordinated attacks last November fueled by ISIS' ability to easily create and maintain accounts ... including on YouTube (owned by Google).

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The family claims the social networks were negligent by allowing ISIS to post beheading videos. What's more ... the suit claims the tech giants raked in profits from ad placements in ISIS postings.

Reynaldo -- whose daughter was the lone American killed in the attacks -- says the social sites failed to take action despite outcry from the U.S. government. 

The family is suing for unspecified damages.

Omar Mateen Wife Helped Buy Ammo ... Claims She Tried To Stop Him

6/14/2016 9:17 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Breaking News

0614-Noor-Zahi-Salman-facebookThe wife of terrorist Omar Mateen accompanied her husband when he bought ammunition and a gun holster ... according to a new report by NBC News.

Noor Zahi Salman has been cooperating with the FBI in their ongoing investigation into Sunday morning's mass shooting at Pulse nightclub, where her husband murdered 49 people.

Noor reportedly told the FBI she tried to talk Omar out of the crime, but it doesn't appear she ever went to authorities. She also admitted to dropping him off at the club at least once prior to the shooting, so he could scope out the venue. 

Noor is Omar's second wife. The couple has a 3-year-old son.

Authorities are considering filing criminal charges against Noor.

Orlando Shooting Survivor He Kept Shooting to Make Sure They Were Really Dead

6/14/2016 8:42 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

A survivor from the Orlando massacre recalled the torturous details after Omar Mateen opened fire inside Pulse nightclub.

Angel Colon -- flanked by friends and family at a local hospital -- gave a chilling press conference telling reporters how Mateen shot everyone on the floor again and again to make sure they were dead.

Angel's harrowing experience includes coming face-to-face with the shooter.

Watch and listen ... it's heartbreaking.

Omar Mateen Threatened to Shoot Up School ... IN FIFTH GRADE!!

6/14/2016 1:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0613-omar-mateen-MYSPACE-01Omar Mateen terrorized his Florida grade school by threatening to go on a shooting spree ... according to multiple former classmates.

5th grade classmate Leslie Hall tells us Mateen told a group of kids at Mariposa Elementary he was going to bring a gun to school and kill everyone. She says it was not received as a joke and the kids immediately told a teacher, and Mateen was suspended for 2 weeks.

Hall doesn't recall exactly what prompted the threat, but does remember her mom having multiple meetings with the school faculty about Mateen's constant bullying of her and other students.

The behavior issues continued into middle school ... according to Hall and other classmates who say he threw chairs and spat at teachers.

As it's been reported ... Mateen also shocked high school classmates on 9/11 by bragging that Osama bin Laden was his uncle.

Mateen's former classmates all agreed the warning signs were abundant at an early age ... and they all wished more had been done in terms of discipline or counseling.

We reached out to the school district ... they didn't want to comment.

0613-omar-mateen-4th-grade-tmz-2B

Gay Pride-Bound Gunman Cops Say Mystery 'Friend' Not an Accomplice

6/13/2016 12:32 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

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The "friend" James Howell -- who was arrested with an arsenal before L.A. Pride -- had driven cross-country to meet ... was just a guy he met online, and not an accomplice to a potential crime ... according to law enforcement.

We're told Howell originally told police he was meeting a friend and going to the parade -- leading cops to believe that person could be a threat to the public.

Law enforcement sources say they found the friend and he backs up Howell's story, but is adamant he was clueless Howell's trunk contained 3 assault rifles, high capacity magazines, and a 5 gallon bucket of chemicals cops suspect could have been used as a bomb.

We're told the friend told police he met the Indiana man online recently, and planned to meet in person to attend Pride together ... and that's all.

Cops believed the alibi ... and cleared him of any involvement.

However ... it's still a mystery as to what exactly, if anything, Howell had planned. We're told he's not budging during questioning. He remains in custody on $500,000 bail.

TMZ broke the story ... Howell -- who has a criminal history with firearms -- was busted with a cache of weapons on his way to the L.A. Pride parade.

Omar Mateen Police Raid Father's House

6/13/2016 12:16 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0613_Omar_Mateen_dad_house_Raid_photos_launchA massive police presence descended upon Omar Mateen's Florida family home Sunday afternoon, hours after authorities ID'd him as the killer in the Orlando nightclub massacre ... and TMZ has obtained the first photos showing police combing the property for clues.

Cops -- some of them wearing leather gloves -- can be seen searching the trunk of a Mercedes SLK 230 and loading numerous boxes into police vehicles. Check out the photos ... you also see police speaking with Omar's father, Seddique.

UFC's Daniel Cormier The LGBT Community Is Strong ... 'We'll Get Through This Together'

6/13/2016 10:52 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

UFC superstar Daniel Cormier has a strong message for the LGBT community -- you are not alone. 

Cormier was out in NYC promoting his fight with Jon Jones at UFC 200 -- when he opened up about the terror attack in Orlando. 

"We gotta take care of each other," Cormier said ... "We have to be there to support each other in these situations as Americans, as human beings, as people."

"The entire world is behind you and we'll get through this together."

Orlando Mass Shooting Victim's Snapchat Captured Start of Gun Battle

6/13/2016 6:55 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Breaking News

One of Omar Mateen's victims was posting videos to social media at the moment he fought his way into the club and opened fire.

25-year-old Amanda Alvear recorded several Snapchat clips from inside Pulse Nightclub -- most of them are innocent fun with friends.

But in the final video Amanda was recording herself when more than a dozen shots are heard.

Many survivors have said clubgoers initially thought the shots were part of the music DJs were playing -- so they didn't react immediately. You can see in Amanda's video -- obtained by the Daily Mirror -- she was not panicked at first by the gunfire. 

Amanda was killed during the standoff. Her sister commented on the video ... "I'm so heartbroken. You could make anyone's day with the smile of yours."

Orlando Mass Shooting Mateen Was About to Kill More ... Chief Describes Final Assault

6/13/2016 6:17 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Breaking News

Mass murderer Omar Mateen was in a fierce gun battle with cops in and outside Pulse Nightclub before he retreated into a bathroom ... where Orlando's Police Chief ultimately made the call to take him out.

Chief John Mina described Mateen's arrival to the club and the firefight that immediately erupted. He also explained why he made the call to use explosives and an armored vehicle to go in and get Mateen when he was holding hostages.

Monday morning's news conference included an important update from the FBI on the death toll -- that the number of innocent victims is actually 49. The 50th was Mateen.

Gay Pride-Bound Gunman Criminal History with Guns

6/12/2016 2:57 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0612-james-howell-mug-shot-TMZ-03James Howell -- the 20-year-old Indiana man who was arrested with an arsenal in his car hours before his planned arrival at the West Hollywood Pride parade was arrested less than a year ago for pointing a gun in a threatening manner ... TMZ has learned.

Howell got in an argument with his Indiana neighbor last October when he pulled a gun in anger. He was arrested and charged with pointing a firearm at another, as well as intimidation.

Howell copped a plea -- the firearm charge was dropped, and he pled to intimidation. Howell is currently on one year probation for that crime.

TMZ broke the story ... Howell was arrested in Santa Monica early Sunday morning after a homeowner reported a prowler. Police found an arsenal in his car, including three assault rifles, high capacity magazines, ammunition, and a 5 gallon bucket with chemicals to make a bomb. He told police he had traveled to California to attend the Pride parade.

TMZ also found this video posted by Howell, who clearly seems to have a fondness for firearms.

Pride Parade Parade-Goer with Assault Rifles Arrested

6/12/2016 10:18 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0612-james-howell-mug-shot-TMZ-01

update_graphic_red_bar2:40 PM PT -- Cops have identified the suspect -- 20 year old James Howell from Indiana.  Police say they found, "three assault rifles, high capacity magazines, and ammunition."  Also, they found a 5 gallon bucket with chemicals capable of forming an improvised explosive device.

Cops also say as of now, there is no connection between James Howell and the shootings in Orlando.update_grey_gray_barA man with assault rifles was arrested early Sunday after telling cops his destination was the Pride parade later today in West Hollywood ... law enforcement sources tell TMZ.

Our sources say Santa Monica PD responded to a prowler call and found the man nearby the house that was allegedly targeted.

We're told he informed cops he was on his way to meet a friend for the Pride parade 10 miles away in WeHo. At a point cops searched his car and our sources say they found multiple assault rifles with a number of loaded magazines that were stacked and taped together --  a marker for someone looking to fire multiple rounds in rapid succession. Cops reportedly also found explosives and camouflage gear.

We're told the man has been arrested.

Santa Monica PD will not comment.

We're told the FBI is now involved. We do not know if cops have a lead on the identity of the "friend" of the man arrested.

Omar Mateen Terrorist was 29-Year-Old Islamic Radical (PHOTO)

6/12/2016 7:26 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

0613-omar-mateen-MYSPACE-01update_graphic_red_bar11:15 AM PT -- There are now reports Omar Mateen called 911 and pledged his allegiance to ISIS before carrying out the deadly shooting. He also mentioned the Boston Marathon bombing.

ISIS is taking credit for the attack, saying, "a soldier of the Islamic State has carried out the attack."update_grey_gray_barThe killer in the Orlando nightclub slaughter is 29-year-old Omar Mateen. TMZ has done a records search and found he held a Florida security officer license and a state firearms license.

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He's an American citizen and he has family that are not -- his parents are Afghan. Authorities say he was a terrorist and was targeting gays. They say in addition to terrorism this is a hate crime.

Authorities also believe he is part of the radical Islam movement, although they do not know if it was an organized attack or if he was a lone wolf. Authorities also believe Mateen specifically targeted a gay club.

Mateen's father told NBC News, "This has nothing to do with religion." He says his son became angry after seeing 2 men kissing a few months ago in Miami, and he speculates that could have triggered his decision to kill.  

Law enforcement says Mateen was well prepared, with an assault weapon, a handgun and 2 suspicious devices.

The NYPD tells TMZ, Mateen has no association with the department, and that the shirts he was photographed in were unofficial garments that could be purchased at any store.

50 people were murdered and another 53 injured inside Pulse nightclub in Orlando. It's the biggest slaughter at the hands of a gunman in American history.

Take a look at the pic below ... it's a police helmet with a bullet hole. The helmet saved the officer's life, although he suffered facial injuries. 

0612-orlando-shooting-officer-helmet-TWITTER-01Police descended on Mateen's home to search shortly after the massacre.

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