An Islamic terrorist shot up an Orlando nightclub, killing 50 people and injuring at least 53 further people are hospitalized.

CNN reports:

Approximately 20 people are dead inside Pulse, a gay nightclub, Orlando Police Chief John Mina said Sunday morning, just hours after a shooter opened fire in the club. At least 42 people have been transported for medical treatment, he said.

Police have shot and killed the gunman, Mina told reporters.
“It’s appears he was organized and well-prepared,” the chief said, adding that the shooter had an assault-type weapon, a handgun and “some type of (other) device on him.” Law enforcement sources told CNN that the device, which was strapped to the suspect, was possibly explosive, but authorities don’t know if it was real or not.
A canine unit indicated there were explosives inside the suspect’s car as well, the sources said.
The most recent information released by police in Orlando is that 50 people have been killed and a further 53 are hospitalized.

ABC 13 reports:

The suspect in the mass shooting at night club in Florida has been identified as Omar Mateen of Port St. Lucie, Florida.

U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson identified the shooter in the Sunday incident. He cited law enforcement officials in speaking to reporters.

A federal law enforcement official with knowledge of the investigation also identified him. The official was not authorized to discuss the investigation publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Florida Department of Law Enforcement Special Agent in Charge Danny Banks said earlier that the mass shooting is being investigated as an act of terrorism. He says authorities are looking into whether the incident was an act of domestic or international terror, and if the shooter was a lone wolf.

Watch the report:

The Orlando police are providing updates via Twitter:

Florida governor Rick Scott is currently en route to Orlando, and we will provide updates as more information is learned.

2:41PM UPDATE (MC):

President Obama called the massacre an “act of terror” and “an act of hate.” He confirmed “the FBI is appropriately investigating this as an act of terror.”

Governor Rick Scott also called it “an act of terror.”

Scott released this statement before he traveled to Orlando:

Governor Scott said, “Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, families and all those affected by this horrific tragedy. We are a strong and resilient state and we will devote every resource available to assist with the shooting in Orlando. Our state emergency operations center is also monitoring this tragic incident. I have been in constant communication with Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs and state and local law enforcement this morning. I would like to also thank all the first responders who quickly came to assist and help those in need.”

3:00PM UPDATE (MC):

The Islamic State has taken responsibility for the attack. However, no one can confirm if they planned the attack or even inspired it. Reports say that Mateen called 911 to pledge allegiance to the terrorist group’s leader, but no one has confirmed that report yet.

3:19PM UPDATE (MC):

The Hamilton musical has decided to not use muskets in their performance tonight because of the Orlando massacre.

4:02PM UPDATE (MC):

The FBI interviewed Mateen three times, but they came up inclusive. He came to their attention in 2013 “after he made inflammatory remarks to coworkers and alleged terrorist ties.” He made contact with a suicide bomber in 2014, which brought in the FBI again.

Officials released names of four victims:

Edward Sotomayor, Jr.
Stanley Almodovar III
Luis Omar Ocasio-Capo
Juan Ramon Guerrero

4:55PM UPDATE (MC):

Mateen’s Afghan father Seddique Mateen hosted a TV show and portrayed him as president of Afghanistan. He also “holds strong political views, including support for the Afghan Taliban.” From The Washington Post:

In one video, Mateen expresses gratitude toward the Afghan Taliban, while denouncing the Pakistani government.

“Our brothers in Waziristan, our warrior brothers in [the] Taliban movement and national Afghan Taliban are rising up,” he said. “Inshallah the Durand Line issue will be solved soon.”