Dylan Roof, the self proclaimed white supremacist who killed black parishioners in a church shooting last year, was found guilty by a federal judge this past week. Roof was charged for a total of 33 different crimes including murder, hate crime and religious obstruction. He was found guilty on all counts.
Over a year ago, he admitted to the crime. It was also determined during the trial that the crime was premeditated. Roof drove across the state to the church where he later committed the crime multiple times in the year leading up to it.
According to The New York Times, the survivors of the attack, as well as the families of those who were murdered were present when the verdict was read. An adult survivor of the attack and her husband stated this about the verdict,
“I wasn’t expecting anything less,” Ms. Sanders told reporters later. “I knew it was going to be guilty, guilty, guilty, all the way through.“My thoughts were if I could get to him, what would I do,” said Mr. Sanders, whose son died in the attack. “But the Lord kept me from charging.”
Although Roof did not belong to any groups and was acting alone in committing the hate crime, he stated blatantly that he did it to take a stand on his perceived epidemic of black on white crime. He has called himself a white supremacist, as well as a white nationalist.
Roof stated to the individuals that he did not shoot at the church that day, that he was not going to harm them, so that they could tell the story of what he did and why he did it.