A federal court has found accused Emanuel AME Church shooter Dylann Roof competent to stand trial, according to Charleston TV station WCSC.
Earlier this month, 22-year-old Roof's lawyers moved to have the suspect analyzed by a doctor to determine whether or not he was suffering a “mental disease or defect” that may make him unable to understand what was going on in court.
Court-appointed Dr. James C. Ballenger reported on Roof's competency in a two-day hearing earlier this week, reports WCSC. The hearing included four other witnesses and the testimony by sworn affidavits of three others. The proceedings happened behind closed doors, away from the public and the media.
Jury selection for the case will resume next Monday at 9 a.m., it is reported.
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Roof is accused of shooting and killing nine parishioners an hour after joining them in bible study on June 17, 2015.
If Roof was found not competent, he would have been turned over to federal custody, where professionals would attempt to make him mentally competent for trial.
Roof was arrested in nearby Shelby, after about 16 hours on the run. Shelby police say they found a .45-caliber handgun in Roof’s car after the arrest was made.
It has been reported that Roof showed no remorse and expressed racist views even as he confessed to the crimes. WBTV, the Observer’s news partner, reported that Roof told authorities he was on his way to Nashville, Tenn., when he was arrested.