The brother of a woman killed by Dylann Roof says his sentencing of death is appropriate.
Malcolm Graham said the death sentence for Roof, who killed nine people when he opened fire at Emanuel AME Church in 2015 in Charleston, “sends a strong message” that hate crimes are unacceptable.
There is “no room in a civilized society for hatred, racism and discrimination,” Graham told The Associated Press.
His sister, Cynthia Hyrd, was killed during the church’s bible study at the church when Roof opened fire.
Roof’s death sentence is the first one for federal hate crimes.
He represented himself during the trial and told jurors that he didn’t have a mental illness. He never apologized or asked that his life be spared.
Jurors reached a decision after three hours of deliberations.
Attorney General Loretta Lynch said she hoped the verdict would provide some closure for Charleston and the country.
Roof’s legal advisers said they were sorry that "despite our best efforts, the legal proceedings have shed so little light on the reasons for this tragedy.”
Roof’s relatives said they would “struggle as long as we live” to understand Roof’s actions and were praying for they families of the nine church members. They said they would always love Roof.
Photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons
Publication date: January 11, 2017