Thursday, June 18, 2015

Nine people, including the pastor, fatally shot at historic Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina - UPDATE: Gunman named as Dylann Roof arrested and detained

By Kathleen

Police gather outside the historic Emanuel AME Church, man kneels in despair (AP) 

Last night at around 9.00 pm a white gunman entered an historically important black church in Charleston, South Carolina and killed nine people. The mayor of the city, Joseph P Riley has declared that the shooting must be regarded as a hate crime.

 "The only reason that someone could walk into a church and shoot people praying is out of hate.
It is the most dastardly act that one could possibly imagine, and we will bring that person to justice. ... This is one hateful person.
This is the most unspeakable and heart-breaking tragedy.
People in prayer on a Wednesday evening. A ritual coming together, praying and worshipping God. To have an awful person come in and shoot them is, is inexplicable."

The gunman remains on the loose and police have recently released photos of a man that they wish to question. They have warned the public not to contact the man as he is extremely dangerous. Police also believe that the crime was motivated by hate.

Photos of the man police would like to question
A police conference is about to begin and police are expected to release further
details of the shooting.


According to Police Chief, Greg Mullan,  the gunman sat with the bible study group for nearly an hour before he started shooting.  There were three survivors. Names of all the victims have not yet been released but two of the victims are believed to be the Pastor of the Church and State Senator, Rev Clementa Pickney and his sister.

The Charleston Police Department has circulated the following poster  information giving details of the suspect and the car he is believed to have used to get away from the scene.

UPDATE 2: The suspect has been named as 21 year old Dylann Roof. He was identified by his uncle, Carson Cowles, who also revealed that Roof was given a gun as a 21st birthday present several months ago.

Roof was previously arrested on two occasions, one drug related and one for trespass. Authorities are questioning his mother.

UPDATE 3:  Dylann Roof has been arrested and detained by police in Shelby, North Carolina.

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