Terrorist Omar Mateen worked 9 years for G4S, despite background and complaints about behavior

Largest security agency's hiring questioned
Posted at 8:54 PM, Jun 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-13 20:54:55-04

Omar Mateen has worked for the past nine years as a security guard for the company G4S, which has millions of dollars in state and local contracts and has been the topic of multiple I-Team investigations.

In the past three years, we've uncovered that G4S does conduct required criminal background checks, but we've uncovered that company sometimes hires people with questionable things in their pasts.

“When he would get in his tempers, he would express hate towards things, toward everything,” said Sitora Yusifiy, Mateen’s ex-wife.

She said she left Mateen because he repeatedly beat her.

But she described him as a police “wanna-be”.

“He really loved the police department. He worked as a corrections officer or guard,” she said.

Mateen posted pictures of himself wearing NYPD shirts on social media sites.

His first job in law enforcement with the Florida Department of Corrections ended after six months.

A coworker told Orlando affiliate WFTV that Mateen was fired for bringing a gun onto Florida Department of Corrections property, but the DOC has not yet confirmed that.

Records show Mateen did get a job with G4S about two months later.

While working at the front entrance of a gated neighborhood, G4S coworker Daniel Gilroy reported to his supervisors that Mateen had disturbing and threatening behavior.  

“He also had a hatred for women, black, Hispanics and gay or lesbian people,” Gilroy said.

The FBI also questioned him three times for alleged ties to terrorists, but they never charged him, and G4S never fired him, according to the company.

“I was saddened,” said former G4S employee Nick Plummer, who did not personally know Mateen.

Plummer has contacted the state repeatedly about his concerns involving G4S’ training and background checks, based on his past experience in law enforcement.

“It's wide open for a terrorist to come work for the security industry,” Plummer said.

G4S has had other issues regarding employees' backgrounds.

Another former Florida DOC employee fired for having sex with an inmate went to work for G4S and was later arrested for allegedly molesting a child in her care at a Florida Department of Juvenile Justice youth detention facility.

A former Pasco County deputy who resigned with a long disciplinary history also got a job with G4S, then allowed a prisoner to be beaten in the back of a transport van.

That man died weeks later.

And we reported extensively on a Polk County riot in which teens overtook a G4S facility, largely due to poor training.  

We reached out to G4S but have not yet heard back from them.

Immediately after the shooter was identified, G4S spokeswoman Monica Lewis-Garcia said:

“We are shocked and saddened by the tragic event that occurred at the Orlando nightclub. We can confirm that Omar Mateen had been employed with G4S since September 10, 2007. We are cooperating fully with all law enforcement authorities, including the FBI, as they conduct their investigation. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of the friends, families and people affected by this unspeakable tragedy.”

In addition to local and state contracts, G4S also has contracts with multiple federal agencies, including the Department of Homeland Security.

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