CHARLESTON, S. C. – The opening of Dylann Roof of the federal death penalty trial saw the raw, emotional testimony of a survivor of the shooting, the grizzly crime scene photos, and a catalogue of racial hatred of the Roof is recorded on video confession and magazine.
The process continues this week in the death of the nine black people on a Charleston, South Carolina, church. Here is what happened, and what to expect.
THIS WEEK’S TESTIMONY
In his opening speech, the assistant-Procurator of the V. S. Jay Richardson said that he would build the case of the church. So far, he’s reached the Roof of the arrest.
Expected to testify this week are the agents who searched the Roof of the house and its family homes. Also expect the experts to analyze what was found.
Richardson said Friday that he expects that at the end of his case by Wednesday, although he could not promise.
Roof attorney David Bruck has admitted to the Roof of the debt, and said in his opening remarks he is planning to call a very few, or perhaps no witnesses.
U. S. District Judge Richard Gergel said he will break for Christmas after the guilt phase ends, and to meet again in court for the penalty phase on Jan. 3.
THE ROOF OF THE HATE
The prosecutors have sprinkled it on a number of sources. But the most important is the two-hour confession to the FBI, about 17 hours after the shooting and his diary were found in his car when he was arrested.
Roof believed the separation needed to return because it kept white people out to fall to the level of the blacks. It had other false claims that whites were the superior race and that blacks loved slavery.
Roof ended this sentence with a racist insult. “Who fights for these white people are forced by economic circumstances to live under (black).”
The process began with a testimony of Felicia Sanders. She was one of the three survivors of the attack, telling the jury she swished her legs in the blood of her dead aunt and the dying son, as Roof might be thinking that she was dead.
Sanders’ 11-year-old granddaughter also survive. Sanders said she held the girl close so she would not scream that she thought she would choke her.
Sanders opened her testimony with happy memories of the nine fellow-Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal parishioners who have died. They ended it with a controlled anger in the direction of the Roof, which was never looked at her.
“He said he was going to kill himself,” Sanders said. “I was counting. There is no place on Earth for him other than the pit of hell.”
Meanwhile, the Roof of the mother was in the audience for opening statements, which are included Richardson calls her son a cold and calculated killer. She collapsed as the judge paused for a break, and the defense lawyers said that they have a heart attack.
FOCUS ON SENTENCING
The focus of the study is expected to be the decisive stage. Before they stepped aside, the defense lawyers said many times during previous hearings that the Roof was willing to plead guilty if the death penalty was taken off the table. The prosecutor pursuing the death penalty say Roof spoke about the start of a race war and posed with the Confederate battle flag for the murders.
ANOTHER TRIAL NEXT YEAR
The roof is confronted with a second death penalty trial early next year in the state court, where he faces nine murders. A state judge is of the order of 600 prospective jurors to report to the Charleston County Courthouse on Jan. 17 for the first screening. To say that the trial will begin on or after Jan. 30. It is not clear when the federal case to be settled. For now, the Roof has lawyers in the state case.