Dylann Roof's attorney disputes claims of a second planned church shooting
- Author: Annette Adams Feb 25, 2017,
Feb 25, 2017, 0:13
The evidence shows Roof exited the interstate and drove toward Branch AME church in Summerville after the massacre at Emanuel AME.
Attorney David Bruck, who represented Roof during his federal death penalty trial, argues that a closer look at the Global Positioning System evidence cited by prosecutors shows that Roof did not stop at Branch AME Church, instead driving past the church at 30 or 40 miles per hour.
That church also has a predominantly African-American congregation and held a Bible study meeting on the night Roof drove to it. Global Positioning System evidence from Roof's vehicle showed he slowed and then stopped at the church for two to three minutes, according to prosecutors.
Roof carried out his attack at Emanuel AME Church on Wednesday night, June 17, 2015.
He said he was shocked to learn through news reports that his church had been Roof's target as well. Roof had represented himself in court since the penalty phase of the trial began.
During trial, prosecutors presented evidence showing Roof had lists of other black churches in his vehicle when he was arrested in Shelby, North Carolina. They argued the evidence was "irrelevant", and Roof had driven past the church.
The U.S. government said the similarities between the two churches suggested Roof "intended to continue his racially-motivated violence at Branch AME Church that night and, more specifically, that his intended targets were African-American congregants at a church".
Roof was sentenced to death last month after a jury convicted him of 33 federal charges. However, Branch AME was not among the churches listed on the papers found in his vehicle. No date has been set for his trial, which had been indefinitely postponed during the federal proceedings.