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Dylan Roof sentenced to death for killing 9 church members

> Dylann Roof, the killer of nine black church members has been convicted of murder and sentenced to death.
> Roof was convicted of 33 federal charges, including murder and hate crimes
22-year-old Dylan Roof, who attacked Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church during a prayer service and shot 9 church members to death, has been sentenced to death by a jury in America.
Dylan Roof sentenced to Death for killing 9 church members
Dylan Roof sentenced to Death for killing 9 church members
Roof was convicted in December of 33 federal charges, including murder and hate crimes. The jury returned after deliberating over his sentence for about three hours on Tuesday, January 10 to announce their decision that Roof should be executed.
Dylan Roof is the first person to face execution for a federal hate crime conviction in America.
In a statement, Roof’s defense team, which he had rejected using during the sentencing phase of the trial, expressed sympathy for “all of the families who were so grievously hurt by Dylann Roof’s actions”.
Roof’s defense team said: “Today’s sentencing decision means that this case will not be over for a very long time. We are sorry that, despite our best efforts, the legal proceedings have shed so little light on the reasons for this tragedy.”
Roof’s family also issued a statement. “We will always love Dylan. We will struggle as long as we live to understand why he committed this horrible attack, which caused so much pain to so many good people. We wish to express the grief we feel for the victims of his crimes, and our sympathy to the many families he has hurt."
When the verdict was read, Roof stood stoic and showed no emotion. He will be formally sentenced on Wednesday, January 11.
Earlier on Tuesday, Roof had told the court he was not sure, "what good it would do” to ask jurors for life in prison instead of execution, showing no remorse for the massacre.
In his final argument to jurors, Roof, a 22-year-old white man, said he felt he had to carry out the slayings on 17 June 2015.
Roof said: “I still feel like I had to do it. Anyone who hates anything in their mind has a good reason for it.”
Prosecutors said Roof deserved execution because he went to the historic Emanuel AME church in Charleston, South Carolina, with a gun and a "hateful heart".
Assistant US attorney Jay Richardson said the 12 people Roof targeted were God-fearing church members who opened the door for a white stranger with a smile. Three people survived.
Roof sat with the Bible study group for about 45 minutes, and during the final prayer – when everyone’s eyes were closed – he started firing. He stood over some of the fallen victims, shooting them again as they lay on the floor, the prosecutor said.
Roof did not explain his actions to jurors, but in his FBI confession he said he hoped to bring back segregation or start a race war.
Roof acted as his own attorney in the sentencing phase of the trial and did not question any witnesses or put up any evidence.



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