Authorities are finally releasing some documents regarding the deadliest domestic Islamic terrorist attack since 9/11, and what we’re seeing of in the timeline is heartbreaking, suggesting both poor police training and leadership.
The redacted call record (PDF) begins with the first “shots fired” call at 2:02:54 AM, followed by a flurry of more calls to 911.
It is known in the first minutes that we’re dealing with a murderer with a long gun intent on causing mass casualties. The officer who was providing security at Pulse had briefly engaged the Islamic terrorist, but was ineffective and did not make any hits. It’s not unfair to note had he been effective with his department-issued sidearm, the incident may have been over as soon as 2:03, with a minimal loss of life.
The first police patrol units were on scene within these first few minutes. At 2:08 a team of 5-6 patrol officers armed with patrol rifles broke through a large window and made entry as the terrorist continued shooting victims for at least three more uninterrupted minutes. They do not make any contact with the terrorist.
That first group of officers has taken cover inside the club at 2:12:10. For more than five more minutes, calls continue to report shots were being fired, which seems to contradict police accounts that the terrorist was not actively shooting with officers inside the club.
According to post-Columbine active shooter protocols as I understand them, officers should have attempted to engage the terrorist since he was still killing victims. They did not.
By 2:18 we know that there are dozens wounded. At 2:22:42 a caller warns that the “subject is loading up,” recharging spent magazines with new cartridges. He’s clearly not done taking lives.
Law enforcement officers inside the club continue to hold position, and do not advance.
The terrorist has been killing at will, unimpeded, for 20 minutes, longer than any mass shooting in recent American history (in 1966 Charles Whitman, the University of Texas bell tower sniper was still active 20 minutes into his rampage, but civilians and police were actively firing on his position). Virginia Tech was over in 12 minutes. Sandy Hook took five.
This terrorist was charging magazines, as the OPD waited and victims bled out on the dance floor and in bathrooms.
Victims are bleeding out, no longer responding to the dispatchers they called to save their lives. Other callers, including a nurse who is among the wounded, are warning that victims are losing too much blood.
No one is coming.
No one is coming.
It isn’t until 38 minutes into the terrorist attack that the now-reloaded shooter calls Orlando PD and announces that he is a Islamic terrorist aligned with the Islamic State.
At this point, a competently trained SWAT command, having learned from the Russian experience at Beslan that terrorists call to “negotiate” only to stall for time and improve their positions to kill more people, should have recognized that the best option for a shooter in a confined space with hostages is to throw in flash-bang grenades and storm in while he was disoriented to take him down.
They could then sweep the club for possible additional shooters and begin extracting the wounded who were still alive.
They didn’t, and more of the wounded advised dispatchers that they were bleeding out.
It wasn’t until 2:51:09, 49 minutes into the attack, that the Islamic terrorist first makes mention of possible explosives.
Dispatchers are losing more callers as they fall unconscious or dead. Callers who remain note that the terrorist is moving from the female restroom to the male restroom; the group of patrol officers who entered the club when the shooting began and failed to take down the terrorist had been pulled out of the building, and SWAT had not apparently inserted anyone in the building to keep him fixed.
It’s 3:00 AM, almost hour into the attack. According to a caller, the terrorist is reloading more magazines.
Another caller falls silent.
Victims continue to advise officers of where they are trapped in the club and try to relay the position of the terrorist as best they can. There are erroneous reports of shots fired at ORMC (Orlando Regional Medical Center).
Callers continue to advise dispatchers of their locations, the nature of the injuries of those wounded, and continue relaying the position of the terrorist to the best of their ability.
Callers once again advise that victims are losing lots of blood and two more victims in the men’s bathroom have apparently died. The Islamic terrorist is still reloading his magazines. The terrorist threatens to rig four victims with bomb vests.
The surviving injured are getting worse. 42 victims are at area hospitals. Many more are still inside the club.
SWAT finally breaches at 5:02 AM, three hours to the minute after the deadliest Islamic domestic terror attack since 9/11 began. Fifteen minutes later, SWAT confirms that the terrorist is down.
It’s 6:09 AM.
Barack Obama and the Democrat Party begin trying to figure out how they are going to blame the worst Islamic terrorist attack since 9/11, carried out by a registered Democrat voter and known Hillary Clinton supporter, on the National Rifle Association. They also decide that they’re going to use the attack to attempt to undermine due process and the presumption of innocence that is every American’s right with calls to place citizens on arbitrary secret lists that they control. The mainstream media gleefully joins in.
A week later, Orlando’s SWAT commander congratulates his men on an “outstanding job.”
49 graves mutely disagree.