Justice took a step forward for the nine Black people gunned down last year in Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church.
Jury selection began on Monday in the federal trial of Dylann Roof, a professed White supremacist charged in the murders of the Charleston, South Carolina parishioners, the Daily Mail reports.
Roof, 22, faces 33 federal charges in connection with the mass shooting. Separately, he also numerous state charges, including nine counts of murder.
More than 3,000 potential jurors received summonses. A first set of about 300 reported on Monday, in groups of 80, for a first round of questioning. Attorneys for both sides will ultimately narrow the pool to just 12 jurors and six alternates.
Roof avoided eye contact and expressed no emotions during the court’s examination of the first 80 potential jurors, ABC News 4 reported. However, the news outlet said he appeared “more relaxed, even smiling and laughing with his attorneys” later in the day, when the third set appeared in the courtroom.
The accused mass shooter faces the death penalty in both the federal and state trials. Roof’s attorneys said their client would plead guilty and accept a life sentence if the government agrees not to seek capital punishment, according to The Mail.
Opening arguments are expected to begin in late November and last for several weeks.
Here's How President Obama Addressed Mass Shootings During His Presidency
1. Fort Hood Shooting - November 5, 2009Source:Getty 1 of 13
2. Tucson Shooting - January 8, 2011Source:Getty 2 of 13
3. Aurora Shooting - July 20, 2012Source:Getty 3 of 13
4. Sikh Temple Shooting - August 5, 2012Source:Getty 4 of 13
5. Sandy Hook Shooting - December 14, 2012Source:Getty 5 of 13
6. Navy Yard Shooting - September 16, 2013Source:Getty 6 of 13
7. Second Fort Hood Shooting - April 2, 2014Source:Getty 7 of 13
8. Kansas Jewish Community Shooting - April 13, 2014Source:Getty 8 of 13
9. Charleston Emanuel AME Shooting - June 17, 2015Source:Getty 9 of 13
10. Chattanooga Recruiting Center Shooting - July 16, 2015Source:Getty 10 of 13
11. Umpqua Community College Shooting - October 1, 2015Source:Getty 11 of 13
12. San Bernardino - December 2, 2015Source:Getty 12 of 13
13. Orlando Pulse Shooting - June 12, 2016Source:Getty 13 of 13
Dylann Roof: Jury Selection Begins In Charleston Church Shooting Federal Trial was originally published on newsone.com