The gunman's widow, who slaughtered 49 people in a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, was acquitted on Friday as she helped plan the attack and lie to the FBI – a rare and burning defeat for the US Government in a Terror
Noor Salman, 31, sobbed when he heard the jury's verdict that he was not hindering a terrorist organization and providing material support to a terrorist organization that could have resulted in life imprisonment. Her family gasped every time the words "not guilty" were uttered.
On the other side of the Orlando courtroom, in June 2016, the families of the victims of Pulse Nightclub filming sat rocky and silent. Within hours Salman was released from prison after 1
"Noor is so grateful that her belief in the trial has been demonstrated and she wants to return to her son," her lawyer Linda Moreno said. Family spokeswoman Susan Clary said Salman's family "always thought Noor was the first victim" of her husband, Omar Mateen.
The verdict echoed by Orlando and the judiciary.
"The government seldom loses, seldom that kind of It has every single factor on its side," said David Oscar Markus, a lawyer from Miami who routinely tried federal cases. "It's a pretty impressive victory for the defense and a devastating loss for the government."
Mateen, the American-born son of Afghan immigrants, was killed by the police after he opened the fire on behalf of the Islamic State Group] Citing an alleged Salman confession, federal prosecutors accused her and Mateen of identifying potential targets together including the Disney World shopping and entertainment complex, and they give it the green light for terrorism.
But The Defense portrayed her as an easy-to-manipulate low-IQ woman, arguing that she signed a false confession because she was tired after a lengthy interrogation and feared losing her young son.
In one blow to the fall of the government, the FBI itself found that receipts and cell phone signals showed that the pair was not near the pulse on the day Salman said it.
The prosecution also did not provide any online posts, texts, or other evidence that Salm was a supported ISIS, and it was difficult for her to face the defense's presentation as a simple, sweet mother holding her 5-year-old son, Love novels and the cartoon character Hello Kitty loves.
After the verdict, the prosecutor's office said they were disappointed and did not take any questions.
The jury did not say much when they left the court.
"Noor Salman should never have been in court," said Ahmed Bedier, a civil rights lawyer and president of United Voices of America. "Leave that verdict as a message to law enforcement officials and prosecutors who are hauling and pursuing innocent people with small evidence that the people of this great nation will not allow."
Some experienced lawyers said the government made a mistake in recording the alleged confession. The jury received only a written statement.
"The FBI needs to start recording their statements, it's a terrible practice, but it's the FBI's policy not to keep records," said Markus. "Even local police authorities are now making and are required to explain, and juries of today's age want to hear the record, they want to see the evidence."
Miami defender David Weinstein said: "As much as we do not do it" I want to admit, this is the age of the mobile phone, which is anchored in the minds of jurors, if it is not recorded, it did not happen. "
Christine Leinonen, a solicitor and former State Trooper whose only son was killed in the nightclub's massacre, said the Orlando Guard she was disappointed but not shocked by the verdict, saying Salman's alleged confession was" clearly enforced "The cops are screwing up their own cases."
The prosecutors had also accused Salman of falsely claiming that her husband had not used the Internet in their home, which he had disabled his Facebook account years earlier that he had a gun when he had three, and that he was not radicalized.
But the defense said Salman, who was born in California to Palestinian parents, was abused and cheated by her husband and that he had much Her lawyers argued that she did not know that her husband would attack the nightclub because he was the same t until just before knew nothing about it.
According to prosecutors, Mateen wanted to attack Disney World's shopping and entertainment complex. He was terrified by the police and chose a new destination.
Lush reported from St. Petersburg, Florida
This story has been corrected to show that Bedier is in the United Voice of America.