Saudi Officer’s Motive in US Naval Base Shooting Still Unknown, Terror Not Ruled Out
US investigators continued to search for answers Monday as to why a 21-year-old Saudi Air Force officer, 2nd Lt. Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani, opened fire in a classroom at a US Navy base in Pensacola, Florida Friday morning, killing three and wounding eight. Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis, told reporters at a press conference on Sunday evening that he was sure the shooting was an act of terrorism and wondered whether it could have been prevented by better vetting of foreign trainees on American military bases. The FBI said it thought the shooter acted alone. The bureau did not rule out terrorism as the motive for the shooting but was still collecting evidence and had many more people to interview in its investigation. Alshamrani lodged a complaint in April against an instructor at the base who made derogatory remarks about him, but there was no apparent connection between that incident and the shooting, according to a report late Sunday by The New York Times. Alshamrani legally purchased the Glock 9mm pistol he used in the shooting, the FBI has confirmed. DeSantis said he was able to buy the weapon because of a “loophole” in federal gun laws. “I’m a big supporter of the Second Amendment, but it’s so Americans can keep and bear arms, not Saudi Arabians,” the governor said.