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FBI: San Bernardino Shooting 'An Act of Terrorism,' Gunman Malik Allegedly Declared Allegiance To ISIS

( [email protected] ) Dec 04, 2015 06:53 PM EST
One of the San Bernardino shooting suspects Tashfeen Malik is said to have pledged her commitment to ISIS and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the self-proclaimed leader of the terror group. Her pledge was done through a Facebook post under a different name.
School buses being loaded, escorted by sheriff's deputies on Waterman. Facebook/San Bernardino Shooting

One of the San Bernardino shooting suspects Tashfeen Malik is said to have pledged her commitment to ISIS and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the self-proclaimed leader of the terror group. Her pledge was done through a Facebook post under a different name. FBI is now investigating the shooting as an act of terror. 

CNN learned from three officials that Malik declared her allegiance on ISIS through Facebook, with the use of a different name. Suspiciously, the post was made while the attack was ongoing. This led many to believe that ISIS is behind this mass shooting. 

CNN also learned from an FBI official that Malik's alleged partner, Syed Farook, maintained soft communication with people being investigated by the FBI for terrorism. According to the FBI official however, it is still unknown what "soft communication" really means. From what they have, Farook's activities in his social media accounts with the suspected terrorists as well as on the telephone were exiguous and intermittent. There was no contact before the attack either. 

In a press conference, FBI Assistant Director David Bowdich said the agency is now looking into the shooting as an act of terrorism. According to law enforcement officials, the news of Malik's allegiance to ISIS as she and her partner was carrying out the deadly attack could be a "game changer." Instead of arguing about gun control, the state would now treat the shooting as related to issues of terrorism, immigration, and radicalism.

According to the FBI director, James Comey, even though the agency is taking on the case as a terrorism-related one, there is still "no indication that the killers are part of an organized larger group or form part of a cell. There is no indication that they are part of a network." Speaking with some reporters, he added that new pieces of evidence forced them to see that the shooting is an "act of terrorism." He also detailed how the two shooters tried to destroy their digital fingerprints and that two cellphones have been uncovered near the scene, in a trash can and crushed. Data on the phones led to some evidence the agency could use, the director confirmed. He added that there were "some telephonic connections between at least one of these individuals and other subjects of our investigation".

As of now, the FBI director claimed that there are no other suspects being investigated. He explained that the two guns that Farook and Malik used came from an "acquaintance." The director clarified that the supplier was so far not under arrest. 

On whether who radicalized who, the director could not say. He said that he cannot say if Malik was the one who radicalized her husband, since she was the one who made a controversial Facebook post to the ISIS. "Being a husband myself we're all influenced to some extent, but I don't know the answer," Comey said. He added that it is concerning for him that the two were never in the agency's radar prior to the attack. "Of course I'm concerned. We didn't know. There's nothing that we've seen yet that would've triggered us to know."

Both Farook and Malik were killed after engaging in a shootout with a police after they carried out the rampage. 

 

 

Tags : San Bernardino Shooting, Malik, Farook, ISIS, terrorism, FBI