Among those who died are the state senator who was pastor of the church, Democrat Clementa Pinckney who was 41, married with two children and had served in the state Senate since 2000.Charleston Police Chief Greg Mullen says the victims of a shooting at a historic black church were six females and three males.
Mayor Joe Riley said during the press conference.
This is inexplicable. It is the most intolerable and unbelievable act possible … The only reason someone could walk into church and shoot people praying is out of hate.
According to the Associated Press, a Justice Department spokesman says federal officials are opening a hate crime investigation into the fatal shooting. The spokesman said Thursday that the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, the FBI, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of South Carolina are opening the investigation. According to reports, Emanuel is the oldest AME church in the South.
Dylann Storm Roof, the 21-year-old suspect was taken into custody Thursday in Shelby, N.C.