(CHARLESTON, S.C.) -- The Justice Department is seeking the death penalty against Dylann Roof, the South Carolina man who allegedly opened fire inside a Charleston church last year, killing nine.
"Following the department’s rigorous review process to thoroughly consider all relevant factual and legal issues, I have determined that the Justice Department will seek the death penalty," Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced Tuesday. "The nature of the alleged crime and the resulting harm compelled this decision."
Roof is accused of killing black worshipers at the historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C. in June 2015, allegedly armed with a .45 caliber handgun and eight magazines loaded with hollow point bullets.
He was looking to kill black worshipers with the goal of "fanning racial flames" around the country and as retribution for perceived slights against whites, Lynch has previously said.
A federal grand jury in South Carolina has indicted Roof, now 22, on 33 counts of federal hate crimes and firearms charges. Roof is also facing state charges.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.
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