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Charleston Church Shooting Suspect Dylann Roof Will Face Death Penalty, Feds Say

”The nature of the alleged crime and the resulting harm compelled this decision,“ attorney general says

Dylann Roof, who is suspected of carrying out a church shooting that left nine people dead in Charleston, South Carolina, last year, should receive the death penalty, the Justice Department said Tuesday.

In a statement, attorney general Loretta E. Lynch said that Roof should be sentenced to death because of “the nature of the alleged crime and the resulting harm.”

“Following the department’s rigorous review process to thoroughly consider all relevant factual and legal issues, I have determined that the Justice Department will seek the death penalty,” Lynch said. “The nature of the alleged crime and the resulting harm compelled this decision.”

Roof is accused of gunning down his victims during a prayer service at the historic black Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston on June 17, 2015. The 22-year-old former landscaper was captured following a manhunt.

According to the New York Times, a manifesto by Roof posted online revealed his white supremacist sentiments.

“I have no choice,” the manifesto read. “I am not in the position to, alone, go into the ghetto and fight. I chose Charleston because it is most historic city in my state, and at one time had the highest ratio of blacks to Whites in the country.

“We have no skinheads, no real KKK, no one doing anything but talking on the internet,” it continued. “Well someone has to have the bravery to take it to the real world, and I guess that has to be me.”

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