Donald Trump has once again been accused of making up facts, this time about the Pulse nightclub massacre.
In recent days, Trump has been defending gun laws in the US in the wake of the recent horrific Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 people dead.
He has even suggested that teachers could be given guns in classrooms so as to defend students from potential attackers.
Now he’s dragged the June 2016 Pulse nightclub massacre into the debate. In a meeting with lawmakers on Wednesday, Trump said that the slaughter could have been prevented if there had been armed individuals at the club.
“You take Pulse nightclub,” Trump said. “If you had one person in that room that could carry a gun and knew how to use it, it wouldn’t have happened, or certainly to the extent that it did.”
It turns out, however, that there was in fact an armed person at the club on the night of the shooting.
Adam Gruler, an off-duty police officer, was working as security at the venue at the time and exchanged gunfire with the shooter, 29-year-old Omar Mateen.
Gruler called for backup and officers arrived after about a minute. Despite this, Gruler and the police were unable to prevent the deaths of 49 LGBTQ people and their friends. More than 50 people were also injured in the attack.
Pic: Mayor Buddy Dyer
Mateen was eventually shot dead after police broke down a wall and stormed the building following a three-hour standoff.
In a touching scene this week, survivors of the shooting at the Stoneman Douglas school met survivors of the Pulse attack at the site of the nightclub massacre in Orlando.
Along with Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, the group stood together as the names of the 66 victims were read out.
“We share their grief and support their efforts to ensure no other community has to experience what Orlando and Parkland have endured,” said Dyer.