By Kasim Ileri
WASHINGTON (AA) – Major American cities tightened security measures Sunday in the wake of a deadly mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Florida.
A Washington DC, Police official speaking to Anadolu Agency on the condition of anonymity said that the department has increased security measures in the American capital “as tragic reports continue to come from Orlando, Florida.”
He declined give specifics of the measures but characterized it “adequately tightened.”
New York Police Department (NYPD) also stepped up security, according to a statement.
“The NYPD has placed our patrol and counter-terrorism resources, including CRC [Critical Response Command], SRG [Strategic Response Group] and ESU [Emergency Service Unit] personnel, on alert pending further information.”
The department said that it is in contact with Florida authorities and the FBI and monitoring developments from Orlando.
“New Yorkers should know that the NYPD has more than 500 officers dedicated solely to terror response, hundreds more to the prevention of incidents, and is constantly working with law enforcement and community partners to counter terror,” the statement added.
The attack comes during LGBT Pride month, when celebrations are being held in cities around the country, including Los Angeles.
More than 400,000 people are expected to line Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood Sunday for the 46th annual Los Angeles Pride Parade.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said in a statement that it would be vigilant to any threat, noting that “the personnel have been briefed on the shooting.”
The department said there have been “no credible threats” to the city or the parade.
Police in Boston also increased the security there, an officer told Anadolu Agency.
“We enhanced security measures. We increased patrols and we will have adequate security at any event in the city,” officer Rachel Guire said.
Chicago police declined to speak to the press on any measures the department may have implemented in response.
At least 50 people were killed and 53 injured following what many are calling the worst mass shooting in U.S. history in Orlando.
“Many” of the injured are in critical condition, a hospital official said during a press briefing.
The shooter has been identified by Congressman Alan Grayson as Omar Mateen, a U.S. citizen in his late 20s from Florida.
An FBI agent told reporters the suspect has not been positively identified by his next of kin, while adding there were no other threats being investigated.
A state of emergency has been declared in the state of Florida, Mayor Buddy Dyer told media.
Grayson said the attack was “ideologically motivated,” possibly confirming earlier police reports that Mateen had “radical Islamic leanings.”