Saudi suspect in base attack hosted dinner party to watch mass shooting videos: report

A U.S. official says that Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani, the Saudi aviation officer who killed three people and wounded more Friday at Naval Air Station Pensacola, hosted a dinner party the night before to watch mass shooting videos, The Associated Press reported.

Alshamrani opened fire inside a classroom Friday morning.

The official also told the AP that authorities say one Saudi student was recording outside the building where the shooting took place and that 10 Saudi students are being held at the base while others are unaccounted for.

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), who has been vocal in his opinion that the attack was terror-related, tweeted Saturday that he had spoken with the Saudi Arabian ambassador to the United States

“Just spoke w Saudi Ambassador Reema Al-Saud & received her condolences,” Gaetz tweeted. “I expressed in the strongest possible terms that we expect to conduct our investigation w full cooperation & no interference from the Kingdom.”

Continuing, he said, “This was a planned terrorist attack & the shooter wasn’t alone.”

Both Gaetz and Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) have called for a review of how foreign military personnel are vetted before entering the U.S. for various types of training.

“I’m extremely concerned by the reports that this shooter was a foreign national training on a U.S. military base in Florida,” Scott said in a statement. “Today, I’m calling for a full review of the U.S. military programs to train foreign nationals on American soil.”

Authorities have said that they are investigating if the shooting was terror-related, according to multiple reports.

The FBI on Friday declined to say whether the shooting was being investigated as terror-related, with a spokesperson telling The Hill that the investigation was “still in the preliminary stages.” 

Tags Florida gun violence Mass shootings Matt Gaetz Matt Gaetz Rick Scott Saudi Arabia U.S. Navy United States

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