Ex-coworker of suspected Orlando shooter says he was 'dangerous,' hated 'blacks, women, lesbians, and Jews'

A gay pride parade in Dallas remembers the victims of a shooting in Orlando
(Image credit: Laura Buckman/AFP/Getty Images)

Daniel Gilroy, 44, worked with Omar Mateen, 29, for about a year as a security guard, and on Sunday he said that he repeatedly warned their employer, G4S, that the man accused of murdering 50 people and wounding 53 more at an Orlando gay nightclub early Sunday morning was an unhinged bigot. "I complained multiple times that he was dangerous, that he didn't like blacks, women, lesbians, and Jews," Gilroy told The Times on Sunday. "You meet bigots," he added, recounting an episode where he said Mateen saw a black man drive past and said he wished he could kill all black people. "But he was above and beyond. He was always angry, sweating, just angry at the world."

"He was always on the edge, always hyper and agitated," Gilroy told the Miami Herald. "He would never have more than three or four sentences without using the word n----r or queer or dyke. It was always about violence." Gilroy, who says he quit after Mateen began harassing him with up to 30 text messages a day, says G4S did not intervene. Mateen's father, Seddique Mateen, told NBC News he believed his son was motivated by homophobia and that "this has nothing to do with religion." According to the elder Mateen, his son became "very angry" during a recent trip to Miami when he saw two men making out in public. "They were kissing each other and touching each other, and he said, 'Look at that. In front of my son, they are doing that.'"

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Peter Weber, The Week US

Peter has worked as a news and culture writer and editor at The Week since the site's launch in 2008. He covers politics, world affairs, religion and cultural currents. His journalism career began as a copy editor at a financial newswire and has included editorial positions at The New York Times Magazine, Facts on File, and Oregon State University.