Who Is Enrique Marquez, San Bernardino Gunman’s Best Friend?
Enrique Marquez has become a focal point in the investigation into the mass shooting carried out by Syed Rizwan Farook and his wife Tashfeen Malik in San Bernardino, Calif., that took the lives of 14 people and injured 21 others Dec. 2.
Who Is Enrique Marquez?
Marquez was first linked to the shooting after it was determined that he had purchased the two AR-15s that Farook and Malik used in the terrorist attack in southern California. U.S. officials have confirmed that Marquez told them that he had bought the assault weapons for Farook a number of years ago, and that he and his late friend had planned a 2012 attack that they ultimately chose not to go through with, reported CNN.
Officials have yet to determine whether or not Marquez’s claims of a 2012 plot are true. It is thought possible that he has fabricated the narrative in an effort to minimize his apparent guilt in the shooting that came to fruition earlier this month.
Marquez had known Farook since childhood, when the two were next door neighbors, reported the Wall Street Journal. Though Farook ended up moving to another neighborhood, the two remained close and would often work on cars in Marquez’s driveway, according to one of his neighbors.
At one point, Marquez converted to Islam and was often seen attending sermons at a local mosque that Farook and his family also attended. Though Marquez is said to have stopped going to mosque in the last couple of years, he remained close to the Farook family and became related by marriage in 2014. Farook’s brother served as a witness when Marquez married his sister-in-law, Russian-born Mariya Chernykh, according to ABC News. Despite signing a marriage certificate on Nov. 29, 2014, there are virtually no other signs that the two lived legitimately as a married couple.
Two days after the devastating shooting, Marquez checked himself into a mental health facility. He has since subjected himself to interrogation and waved his Miranda rights. As of yet, authorities have not formally charged him with any crime in connection to the attack.