Orlando Gunman's Ex-Wife Says He Had Secret Side – as Pulse Patrons Claim He Was a Regular at Gay Club and Used Grindr

Patrons say Omar Mateen visited Pulse nightclub numerous times before carrying out the deadly shooting


The ex-wife of the gunman behind the shooting at Pulse nightclub says he revealed his secret side early in their marriage amid reports from patrons that he visited the gay-friendly Orlando hotspot multiple times and used the gay dating app Grindr, according to multiple reports.

During a CNN appearance earlier this week, Sitora Yusufiy responded to claims that Omar Mateen visited Pulse nightclub frequently, but said she doesn’t know if the man was gay.

“When we had gotten married, he confessed to me about his past, that was recent at that time, and that he very much enjoyed going to clubs and the nightlife and there was a lot of pictures of him, so I feel like it’s a side of him or a part of him that he lived but probably wouldn’t want everybody to know about,” she said.

“He never personally, or physically, made any indication while we were together of that, but he did feel very strongly about homosexuality.”

The news comes as federal officials reportedly investigate reports that that Mateen visited Pulse nightclub multiple times before killing 49 people and wounding dozens in the deadliest mass shooting in American history, according to CBS News.

“Sometimes he would go over in the corner and sit and drink by himself, and other times he would get so drunk he was loud and belligerent,” Ty Smith told the Orlando Sentinel.

“We didn’t really talk to him a lot, but I remember him saying things about his dad at times. He told us he had a wife and child.”

One Pulse regular told NBC News that Mateen used gay dating apps.

“I recognized him off Grindr,” Cord Cedeno told NBC. “I recognized him from one of the apps but I instantly blocked him because, like, he was very creepy in his messages.”

Cedeno noted that one of his friends claimed to have known Mateen through dating apps since 2007.

Mateen opened fire on the LGBTQ hotspot around 2 a.m. on Sunday before he was killed in a shootout with police hours later.

WATCH: Story Behind the Story: Greg Hanlon on Orlando

In the days following the tragedy, more details about the gunman, a married father of one, have come to light, including his declared allegiance to ISIS – and news that he was investigated by the FBI twice.

A federal law enforcement source previously told PEOPLE that Mateen and his wife, Noor Zahi Salman, visited Walt Disney World in April.

Salman recently told authorities that he had been “scouting Downtown Disney and Pulse for attacks.”

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