The Orlando nightclub shooter's wife has been charged with aiding and abetting her husband and providing material support to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), officials said Tuesday.
If convicted on all counts, Noor Salman, 30, faces a maximum sentence of life in prison. Her late husband, Omar Mateen, killed 49 people in the shooting at Pulse, a gay nightclub, in Florida in June.
Salman was arrested Monday in California, where her family lives. She made a brief court appearance Tuesday morning to affirm that she understood the charges and her rights and will return to face a detention hearing Wednesday morning.
The two-count indictment provides few details but does accuse Salman of willfully misleading the Fort Pierce, Fla., police department in order to prevent it from communicating with the FBI about “information related to” the Orlando shooting.
Salman told The New York Times in November that she had no prior knowledge of Mateen’s plans and did not condone his actions.
She reportedly told investigators in the days after the attack that she was with him when he purchased ammunition and tried to dissuade him from violence, according to NBC.
Her lawyers have said it is “misguided and wrong” to prosecute her, arguing that she “could not have predicted” what her husband would do that night.
Mateen’s shooting was the deadliest act of terror on U.S. soil since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, and it was the most lethal shooting in recent history. He killed 49 people and wounded 53 others before being shot to death by police.
“Nothing can erase the pain we all feel about the senseless and brutal murders of 49 of our neighbors, friends, family members and loved ones,” Orlando Police Chief John Mina tweeted Monday. "But today, there is some relief in knowing that someone will be held accountable for that horrific crime.”