ORLANDO, Fla. — Monday marked the third day of testimony in the trial of Noor Salman, the widow of the Pulse Orlando gunman.
The case hinges on whether Salman, 31, knowingly helped her husband, Omar Mateen, plan the June 12, 2016, attack.
Salman has pleaded not guilty to charges of aiding the support of a foreign terrorist organization resulting in death and obstruction of justice. She faces life in prison if convicted.
FBI Special Agent Ricardo Enriquez testified Monday that Salman provided three written statements during a 4½-hour interview after the massacre. He said he wrote down the statements, because she was too nervous to do so on her own.
Enriquez said Salman told him Mateen was looking at Islamic State and jihad videos and websites almost every day for two years before the attack and that she caught him looking at the nightclub's website.
"I knew that the time to attack the club was close," Salman said in one of the statements.
Mateen asked Salman how upset people would be when the nightclub got attacked, as he drove her around the venue with the car windows lowered for 20 minutes one week before the shootings, one of the statements said.
Salman apologized for what had happened and said she wished she could go back and tell Mateen's family and police about what he was going to do, according to a statement.
Enriquez testified that Salman told him she didn't do more to stop the massacre because she didn't want her in-laws to hate her.
Enriquez said he asked Salman to read aloud the written statement and while doing so, she began crying and said, "I knew."
Salman shook her head during much of Enriquez's testimony and turned around to tell her family that he was lying.
Charles Swift, Salman's attorney, spent two hours cross-examining Enriquez, who said he didn't record the interview because there were no cameras in the room they were in and audio recording required special permission. He also said he didn't take notes or ask a fellow agent to sit in on the interview.
"The defense is also trying to show that the FBI agent may have put words in Noor Salman's mouth when he wrote the statement, which she dictated," WFTV legal analyst Bill Sheaffer said. "Did she have knowledge? Maybe. But even if she had knowledge, there's been no evidence thus far that she participated."
Enriquez said he couldn't remember if he asked Salman what kind of gun Mateen had. Swift suggested that someone who was tasked with investigating a mass shooting should have documented such details.
Swift asked Enriquez why Salman and Mateen visited CityPlace, a West Palm Beach mall. The agent told the lawyer that they were casing it.
"Objection!" Swift shouted.
"How can he object to his own question?" a federal prosecutor said.
It's unknown if Enriquez will continue testifying Tuesday.
Susan Adeih, Salman's cousin, said outside of court that Salman wasn't involved in planning the massacre.
"This young lady, she wouldn't be able to," she said. "She is not capable of it. She is scared."
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