The man police say gunned down a pastor and eight members of his congregation during their bible study class Wednesday night is now back in South Carolina to face murder charges. 21-year-old Dylann Roof is under lock and key in Charleston.
Roof is accused of a mass shooting at Emanuel AME Church. He was flown back to Charleston Thursday afternoon hours after police apprehended him during a traffic stop near Shelby, North Carolina.
During a court appearance Roof waived extradition. He also waived his right to counsel, which means he will either represent himself or hire his own lawyer.
Eyewitnesses say he walked into the predominately black church Wednesday night and spent an hour listening before he jumped out of his chair, exclaimed he was there to kill black people and started shooting. He is accused of killing six women and three men, including a pastor and state senator.
Debbie Dills recognized Roof’s car Thursday from surveillance photos and called police.
“I was directly behind him at a stop light. And everything going through my mind was what if’s, but the only thing I could see was those prayer circles in Charleston and those people with their hands together praying, that their prayer would be answered.”
Roof was taken to a waiting police car wearing a bulletproof vest, with shackles on his feet and his hands cuffed behind his back. A short time later, law enforcement officers escorted him onto a private plane for the flight back to Charleston.
Police recovered a 45 caliber handgun from Roof’s car. Investigators found shell casings from a gun of the same caliber at the shooting scene.
Roof was arrested earlier this year on separate charges of trespassing and drug possession.