On Wednesday, just over a month after the Charleston church shooting that left nine churchgoers dead after a routine prayer meeting, shooting suspect Dylann Roof was indicted for charges that included federal hate crimes. Roof was captured less than 48 hours after the shooting, with Gov. Nikki Haley calling for him to receive the death penalty for what authorities are calling a hate crime against the historically black Emanuel AME church. Attorney General Loretta Lynch said during a Wednesday press conference following the indictment that Roof had sought to "carry out these twin goals of fanning racial flames and exacting revenge ... [He] further decided to seek out and murder African Americans because of their race."
“Racially motivated violence such as this is the original domestic terrorism," Lynch noted.
Roof has been charged with 33 federal violations, some of which carry the death penalty. If found guilty, he will be considered for execution. Here's exactly what he's being accused of in a trial that's tentatively scheduled for next July.
Nine Counts Of Hate Crime Murder
Nine churchgoers were killed in the June shooting. Roof is being tried for violations of the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, the penalty for which is death.
Three Counts Of Hate Crime Attempted Murder
Roof is also being charged with attempting to murder three more people for the same racially-motivated reasons.
Nine Counts Of Obstructing Religion With Murder
As Lynch pointed out during her press conference, it was no accident that Roof allegedly planned for the murders to take place in a church. Given that the nine victims were killed while exercising their right to pray, Roof is also charged with depriving them of doing so.
Three Counts Of Obstructing Religion With Attempted Murder And A Firearm
Roof is also charged with obstructing the religious rights of his alleged victims with attempted murder.
Nine Counts Of Use Of A Firearm To Commit Murder
These final charges are for using a gun as part of a murder. Authorities have noted that Roof was able to purchase a gun because of a faulty background check.