The father of the gunman behind the San Bernardino, California massacre was medicated and does not recall telling an Italian newspaper that his son, Syed Rizwan Farook, backed the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) and was obsessed with Israel, according to a family lawyer.
David Chesley, the Farook family attorney, rebutted the Italian newspaper’s account of its interview with the San Bernardino shooter’s father, also named Syed Farook, telling CNN that the report is “doubtful at best.”
Farook’s father reportedly told Italian newspaper La Stampa over the weekend that his son supported ISIS’s ideology of establishing an Islamic caliphate.
“My son said that he shared [ISIS leader Abu Bakr] Al Baghdadi’s ideology and supported the creation of the Islamic State. He was also obsessed with Israel,” reportedly said the elder Farook.
Echoing a spokesperson for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a Muslim organization, Chesley told CNN that Farook’s father did not recall talking to La Stampa.
The family attorney took it a step further, saying the elder Farook did not recall making those comments because he was medicated.
“Chesley told CNN that the father was on medications and didn’t recall making those comments to the Italian newspaper,” reported CNN on Tuesday.
On Monday, ABC News reported that “A spokesperson for the Muslim rights organization CAIR said the father did not recall talking to the Italian newspaper.”
The unnamed spokesperson did not elaborate further on why Farook’s father did not remember talking to the Italian news outlet.
CAIR refused to respond to Breitbart News’ requests for comment.
“(Farook’s) family was completely surprised and devastated,” Chesley told CNN on Monday, referring to the Dec. 2 shooting, adding, “No one had any knowledge. If anybody would have, they definitely would have done something to stop it.”
The attorney noted that “Farook’s mother, who shared a townhouse in Redlands, California, with the couple and their 6-month-old baby, lived in an isolated part of the house.”
Chesley did not immediately respond to Breitbart News’ request for comment.
On Dec. 2, Syed Rizwan Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, opened fire at a holiday luncheon for his co-workers at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, California, killing 14 people and wounding 21 others.
The couple was killed by police in a shootout shortly after the massacre.
FBI investigators have determined that Farook and his wife had been radicalized “for quite some time,” with the latter allegedly pledging allegiance to ISIS in Facebook post moments after the shooting began.