Charleston Church Shooter Dylann Roof To Plead Guilty To State Murder Charges
Roof, who was convicted of 33 federal charges in January, was initially sentenced to death for the murder of nine black worshippers at Emanuel AME Church.
However, now that Roof has pleaded guilty he will receive a life sentence. This is good news for the loved ones of Roof’s victims, considering that they will not be subjected to a second death penalty trial.
9th Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson let the families of Roof’s victims know that she was accepting a guilty plea instead, early Friday.
“I write with great news that the State’s case is ready to wrap up,” Wilson said. “As I told you towards the end of trial and in other updates, at this point our goal is to provide an insurance policy to the federal conviction and sentence. The most effective way to do that is to secure a guilty plea for a life sentence and get the defendant into federal custody.”
“The goal is to get him into federal custody so their sentence can be imposed,” Wilson added.
At his plea hearing Roof will be able to address the judge if he chooses. Loved ones of the people he killed will have that opportunity as well.
Following that Roof will likely be transferred from the Charleston County detention center to a federal Bureau of Prisons facility.
A week ago came news that Joey Meek, a friend of Roof’s who was aware of the white supremacist’s massacre plan, would be going to prison for 27 months for misleading the federal authorities in the aftermath of the attack.
“I don’t know if I will make it out of prison alive. I’m scared,” Meek told the court during the sentence hearing. “I’m sorry from the bottom of my heart. [I] really wish I would have called the cops.”
However, Judge Gergel, who oversaw the trial, stated that Meek’s crimes warranted prison.
“The danger he exposed to the community is extraordinary,” Gergel said.