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Charleston Shooter Dylann Roof to Plead Guilty to Murder
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Summary: Dylann Roof has agreed to plead guilty for murdering nine people in Charleston, South Carolina. 

White supremacist Dylann Roof will plead guilty to state murder charges on April 10. Roof was convicted and sentenced in federal court for opening fire at a historic black church in Charleston, South Carolina. Prosecutors told The Huffington Post this week that he will plead guilty on separate murder charges from the state.

  
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On June 17, 2015, Roof barged into a Bible study meeting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church and shot and killed nine black parishioners. The hateful then 22-year-old videotaped a chilling confession that began with the words, “I went to that church in Charleston and I did it.” In elaborate detail, he described what he did and that he intended to start a race war.

Roof admitted that he had been planning the attack for months, often driving by the historical church and calling it to find out when members were meeting.

In January of this year, a jury found Roof guilty of 33 charges, including hate crimes. During his confessional video, the self-proclaimed racist said, “What I did is still minuscule to what [black people are] doing to white people every day.”

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In federal court, Roof was sentenced to death, and as part of his state plea agreement, he is allowed to bypass a separate state trial. South Carolina Solicitor Scarlett Wilson told Reuters that Roof agreed to plead guilty and that the state prosecutors will thus no longer pursue their own death penalty sentence.

Roof will remain at The Charleston County Jail, according to USA Today, and U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel has ordered his supervision to switch from county authorities to federal authorities.



Solicitor Wilson would not disclose the specifics of why the state chose to plea with Roof, but she did say that the state’s goal was to get him into federal custody as soon as possible. According to USA Today, this is most likely because they want him closer to his death penalty sentence.

Reverend Anthony Thompson told The Huffington Post that he was grateful to not have to go through another trial. His wife Myra was murdered in the Charleston Shooting, and during the federal trial, he endured weeks of listening to emotional testimony and viewing graphic crime scene evidence.

Thompson told The Huffington Post, “I’m not dealing with this anymore. I’m not concerned with Dylann Roof. I’m praying for him and that is it.”

During the federal trial, Roof represented himself after previously firing his counsel, and he appeared to not bother to defend himself, never calling witnesses or presenting evidence.

Roof’s victims were Rev. Clementa Pinckney, 41; Rev. Daniel Simmons, 74; Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, 45; Depayne Middleton-Doctor, 49; Cynthia Hurd, 54; Myra Thompson, 59; Ethel Lance, 70; Susie Jackson, 87; and Tywanza Sanders, 26. Witnesses said that Roof had shot churchgoers who were in the midst of praying.

Photo courtesy of ABC

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