Dylann Roof on murder charges over Charleston shooting

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The man suspected of shooting dead nine people at an African-American church in Charleston has been charged with nine counts of murder and one weapons possession charge, police say.

Suspect Dylann Roof, 21, is due to make his first court appearance on Friday.

Police are treating the killings at the Emanuel AME Church on Wednesday night in South Carolina as a hate crime.

He was arrested the following day more than 200 miles away in North Carolina and then flown back to Charleston.

South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley has said Mr Roof should face execution.

“We will absolutely want him to have the death penalty,” she told NBC News.

Mr Roof’s first court hearing is set for 14:00 local time (17:00 GMT), but it is likely he will appear via a video feed and not in person.

The victims of the shooting included a state senator.

Governor Nikki Haley said she wanted Mr Roof to face execution

President Barack Obama, speaking around midday on Thursday, described the event as yet another tragedy caused by guns in society.

The city’s mayor called the massacre an act of “pure, pure concentrated evil”.

An acquaintance of Mr Roof said that the 21-year-old had complained that “blacks were taking over the world”.

Joey Meek said that he and Mr Roof got drunk off vodka a few weeks ago, and the now-suspect said “someone needed to do something about it for the white race”.

Charleston officials are planning a prayer vigil for Friday evening.

 

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