Jury Finds Dylann Roof Guilty on All Counts After Just 2 Hours of Deliberation


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Though it may be small consolation to the families of the nine black men and women who were murdered during last year's church massacre in Charleston, South Carolina, at least they know justice has been served. After deliberating for about two hours, jurors found Dylann Roof guilty of all 33 federal charges he faced in what were deemed racially motivated killings.

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A self-proclaimed white supremacist, Roof had confessed to entering the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church during a Bible study and opening fire. It was his taped confession that jurors asked to see before rendering their quick verdict, which came after hearing six days of testimony. According to the New York Times, Roof kept his hands at his side while his face remained emotionless as the verdict was read. 

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Despite his confession, Roof pleaded not guilty on all charges, which included hate crimes. In January, when the next phase of the trial is set to begin, jurors will decided whether the 22-year-old should spend his life in prison or be sentenced to death. Roof intends to represent himself when he faces jurors again on January 3. 

Roof's attorney's request for a mistrial based on one survivor's emotionally charged testimony was rejected last week. In her testimony, survivor Felicia Sanders recalled the horror of watching her son and her aunt shot to death as she hid with her granddaughter beneath a table, and said of Roof, "There's no place on Earth for him other than the pit of hell."

It was reported that Roof's mother collapsed and repeatedly said, "I'm sorry," before suffering a heart attack at the trial. 

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For those who lost loved ones or lived through this nightmare, they have to feel some sense of justice, yet it can never take away the pain that they have suffered and endured at the hands of this coldhearted killer.

Unfortunately, whichever way the jury goes, there are no winners. These victims are gone and their families will never be the same. Roof's family probably will never have answers to what caused this hatred to grow in their son's heart, and their lives will never be easy, as guilt by association is often par for the course in small towns. 

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