A friend of Amanda Alvear holds up her photo at a memorial service the day after a mass shooting at the Pulse gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, U.S. June 13, 2016.
A friend of Amanda Alvear holds up her photo at a memorial service the day after a mass shooting at the Pulse gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, U.S. June 13, 2016. Reuters/Carlo Allegri

At 4 p.m. AEST on Monday, gunman and one of FBI’s suspected terrorists since 2013 Omar Mateen opened fire in Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, killing 49 people and injuring 53. Mateen was killed in the shootout with the police but not before pledging loyalty to ISIS.

Orlando witnessed true horror after families were informed that their loved ones were the victims of an act of terror. Pulse, a popular gay nightclub, was targeted by Mateen. Orlando Sentinel writes that Mateen had been there at least a dozen times, presumably scouting the place. At least four regular customers confirmed that Mateen would often drink by himself, and when he was inebriated, he would share some information about himself to others like a wife and child.

On a recent update by WFTV, law enforcement authorities believe that Mateen had an accomplice who helped him carryout the massacre. If proven, an arrest could be possible in the next few days following the Orlando shooting. US Attorney Lee Bentley said that despite the bloodshed at Pulse, there is not enough evidence to prove that whoever Mateen had as an accomplice could put the public in imminent danger.

The motivation of Orlando gunman Omar Mateen

Washington Post reports that following the terror in Orlando, Mateen’s former classmates in high school gathered to recount how the gunman reacted when 9/11 happened. According to most of his classmates, they were all watching the events take place in their high school and when the second plane hit the World Trade Centre, Mateen began “jumping up-and-down cheering on the terrorist.”

United States President Barack Obama said in a news conference that the attack is the result of “homegrown terrorism.” Investigations have so far not found any link between Mateen and any terrorist network or that the Orlando massacre was only part of a bigger plan.

Another motivation that several reports speculated on was extreme homophobia. A question posed by most of the people who followed the events was “Homophobia or Terrorism?” CNN’s Frida Ghitis wrote in her opinion that these terms are not mutually exclusive and should not be considered as such. There is sound logic in concluding that the horror Mateen bestowed upon Orlando could be an act of terrorism motivated by homophobia.

Omar Mateen legally bought the guns used to kill 49 people

In the wake of the Orlando mass killing, the debates on gun bans have been reignited and intensified.

“I hope every member of the House and Senate had time for quiet reflection yesterday to ask what we could have done to prevent this tragedy,” Democratic leader Senator Harry Reid of Nevada said, as reported by the New York Times. “I’m so sorry. I’m heartsick, I’m basically sick by our inaction. It’s shameful the United States Senate has done nothing — nothing — to stop these mass shootings.”

Police investigation found that Mateen went through the legal process of acquiring his guns. CNN reports that the assault rifle, semiautomatic pistol and revolver came from a Fort Piece gun shop owned by Ed Henson, who expressed his devastation of learning that one of his customers is the reason why Orlando is in a state of devastation. Mateen went through a full background check.

Updated list of Orlando shooting victims

The City of Orlando website updates the Orlando shooting victim list as soon as the names are released. So far, 48 out of 49 people have been identified, including an 18-year old who is so far the youngest to die in the hands of a gunman. Some of the victims were able to contact their families before they died, asking their parents to call 911. Minutes before Mateen was cornered in the bathroom, one of the victims contacted his mother and told her that he was going to die. Eddie Jamoldroy Justice was confirmed dead hours later.

Here is the most updated Orlando shooting victims list:

Edward Sotomayor Jr.
Stanley Almodovar III
Luis Omar Ocasio-Capo
Juan Ramon Guerrero
Eric Ivan Ortiz-Rivera
Peter O. Gonzalez-Cruz
Luis S. Vielma
Kimberly Morris
Eddie Jamoldroy Justice
Darryl Roman Burt II
Deonka Deidra Drayton
Alejandro Barrios Martinez
Anthony Luis Laureanodisla
Jean Carlos Mendez Perez
Franky Jimmy Dejesus Velazquez
Amanda Alvear
Martin Benitez Torres
Luis Daniel Wilson-Leon
Mercedez Marisol Flores
Xavier Emmanuel Serrano Rosado
Gilberto Ramon Silva Menendez
Simon Adrian Carrillo Fernandez
Oscar A Aracena-Montero
Enrique L. Rios, Jr.
Miguel Angel Honorato
Javier Jorge-Reyes
Joel Rayon Paniagua
Jason Benjamin Josaphat
Cory James Connell
Juan P. Rivera Velazquez
Luis Daniel Conde
Shane Evan Tomlinson
Juan Chevez-Martinez
Jerald Arthur Wright
Leroy Valentin Fernandez
Tevin Eugene Crosby
Jonathan Antonio Camuy Vega
Jean C. Nives Rodriguez
Rodolfo Ayala-Ayala
Brenda Lee Marquez McCool
Yilmary Rodriguez Solivan
Christopher Andrew Leinonen
Angel L. Candelario-Padro
Frank Hernandez
Paul Terrell Henry
Antonio Davon Brown
Christopher Joseph Sanfeliz
Akyra Monet Murray

The 49th victim is yet to be identified.

Outpour of support for Orlando and the LGBT community from the social media

All around the world, people are watching and praying for Orlando. In Paris, France the Eiffel Tower was lit up with rainbow lights to honour the victims and families in Orlando. Sydney Harbour Bridge was also turned into a rainbow as tribute to Orlando victims.