Convicted mass murderer Dylann Roof’s sentencing hearing happened in Charleston, South Carolina on Wednesday. He was convicted last month.
Dylann Roof: Death Penalty
Roof is reportedly not doing much to convince the jury to save his life. The 22-year-old committed nine racially motivated murders in a historical black church in 2015. Roof, acting as his own attorney, has addressed to the jury that will decide his fate, as per Vocativ.
Roof said he was trusting people he shouldn’t have trusted. Furthermore, he stated that there’s nothing wrong with him psychologically, adding that he was not going to lie to the jury, not by himself or through somebody else.
By pointing at sanity issues, Prosecutor Nathan Williams made an emotional plea to the court to serve Roof with a death sentence.
Meanwhile, by representing himself, Roof may have severed one of the few favorable factors that might make the jury sentence him to life in prison rather than death. He was reportedly trying to receive the death sentence on purpose.
Earlier, Roof informed U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel that he would not call witnesses. In addition, he said he would not present evidence that might convince the jury to spare his life.
While representing himself, Roof was able to avoid questions regarding his mental state.
Dylann Roof: Insanity Defense
The convicted mass murderer’s attorneys have been attending unsuccessful trials for months to present an insanity defense. However, Roof strictly defied such defense. He wrote in a journal, which was found in his car after the June 2015 shootings, that he was opposed to psychology in moral terms. According to his writing, psychology is a Jewish invention that does nothing but create diseases. In addition, Roof said that the psychological subject tells people that they have problems when they do not.
Although Roof’s lawyers are expecting to present an insanity defense, he was considered fit to stand trial. After two competency hearings, he was also deemed fit to represent himself in the sentencing phase.
Judge Gergel stated that Roof has an “extremely high IQ.” He also stated that Roof has zero cognitive impairment, so he could easily participate in the trial, according to NBC News.
“I do not regret what I did. I am not sorry,” Roof said.
“Sometimes in my cell I think about how good it would be to watch a movie but then I remember how good it felt to do what I did and I think it was worth it.”