‘I forgive you’: Victims’ families confront Charleston church shooter suspect
Dylann Roof stood with a blank expression on his face as he heard words of forgiveness from the families of some of the nine people he has been accused of killing.
The 21-year-old appeared Friday afternoon by video feed at a hearing in Charleston, South Carolina.
He stood motionless while listening to the words of relatives of victims he gunned down Wednesday night at a Bible study at the historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church.
Relatives of the victims stood up one by one in the courtroom, offering forgiveness to the man accused.
Felicia Sanders, the mother of victim Tywanza Sanders and a survivor of the church shooting herself, said: “Every fiber in my body hurts, and I will never be the same.
“As we said in the Bible study, we enjoyed you. But may God have mercy on you.”
Roof is being held in isolation.
According to a statement issued by his public defender, Roof’s family extended their “deepest sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims.”
The family’s statement also said: “Words cannot express our shock, grief and disbelief as to what happened that night. We are devastated and saddened by what occurred. We offer our prayers sympathy for all of those impacted by these events.”