Dylann Roof Sentenced To Death For 2015 Charleston Shooting
Dylann Roof, the white supremacist who was guilty of the death of nine black churchgoers and who said he would do it all again, has been sentenced to death.
It took the jury three hours to decide that Roof, aged 22, would face the death penalty.
He was convicted last month of 33 charges, including that of hate crimes, and said, among other remarks in his closing speech: "I had to do it."
He is the first person in history to be sentenced for a federal hate crime.
On the evening on June 17, 2015, Roof went into the Emanuel African Methodist Church in downtown Charleston and opened fire while they were praying. The following day he admitted to the crime in the hope of igniting a race war.
Roof told the jury: "I would say in this case the prosecution and anyone else who hates me are the ones who have been misled.
"Anyone including the prosecution who thinks I'm filled with hatred has no idea what real hate is."
"They don't know anything about me. They don't know what real hatred looks like. They think they do but they don't really."
Prosecuting, Assistant U.S. Attorney Jay Richardson explained how abhorrent his crimes were:
"He'd come with a hateful heart and a Glock 45."
"This was cold and calculated, planned for months, researched for years."
The victims of the barbaric attack.
As the verdict was handed to him, Roof reportedly asked for new lawyers. Prior to this, he offered to plead guilty in exchange for a lighter sentence but given the severity of his crimes and complete lack of repentance, this was rejected.
Featured Image Credit: PA