JUST IN: Dylann Roof Convicted Of Horrible Hate Crimes In Church Shooting Spree (VIDEO)

Dylann Roof was convicted on 33 counts of federal hate crimes today for killing nine people, and attempting to kill three more in a Charleston, South Carolina, church last year.

Motivated By Hate

Roof entered the basement of the historically Black church on June 17, 2015. He sat among the parishioners while they prayed for nearly an hour. During their final prayer, Roof opened fire.

All of those gathered in prayer that day were African-American. Dylann Roof is white. During the attack, people cowered under tables in an attempt to stay alive. One survivor, Felicia Sanders, testified that she heard her son, Tywanza, ask Roof why he was shooting.

Roof reportedly replied:

“Y’all raping our women, and y’all are taking over the world.”

Tywanza died of his injuries, along with eight other people that day. Sanders testified:

“I watched my son come into this world, and I watched my son leave this world.”

Dylann Roof was arrested for the shooting spree the following day, and less than 24 hours later, gave a videotaped confession:

“I went to that church in Charleston and I did it… Yes, I am guilty. We all know I’m guilty.”

Roof admitted that the crime was motivated by his hatred of African-American people:

“I do consider myself a white supremacist … What I did is still minuscule [compared] to what they’re doing to white people every day.”

Awaiting Sentencing

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for Roof. Roof plans to represent himself during the sentencing phase of the trial, which begins January 3, 2017. He initially represented himself during the guilt phase of the trial, but asked to have his defense team reinstated after five days.

In addition to the nine murder charges of which he was convicted and now make him eligible for a federal death sentence, Roof was convicted of attempted murder, weapons charges, obstruction of religious belief, and damage to religious property.

He still faces state murder charges in the killings. Federal death sentences are rare, with only 62 federal inmates awaiting execution. Nationwide, there are more than 3,000 state inmates waiting to be executed.

Remembering The Victims

Dylann Roof’s name is one the public is unlikely to forget, but the people worth remembering today are his victims. They came together to pray, and were gunned down in a brutal act of racism and hate.

The Deceased:

  • The Rev. Daniel Simmons
  • The Rev. Sharonda Coleman-Singleton
  • The Rev. Clementa Pickney
  • Myra Thompson
  • Depayne Middleton Doctor
  • Susie Jackson
  • Ethel Lance
  • Tywanza Sanders
  • Cynthia Hurd

The Survivors

  • Polly Sheppard
  • Felicia Sanders
  • K.M., a child identified only by these initials in the indictment

Watch Roof’s confession as he gave it to the FBI:

Featured Image: Screenshot Via YouTube Video.

April Fox is a freelance writer from North Carolina. In 2009, she appeared on an Irish radio show to discuss an article she penned on the benefits of punk rock on child development. She writes a little bit about everything, but her interests lean primarily toward music, politics, and parenting and child development. Her books, Object Permanence, Spine, and Chicken Soup for the Fuck You, are available on Amazon and in stores around her hometown of Asheville, NC.