Dylann Roof has refused to apologize for shooting up a predominantly black church in Charleston, South Carolina. Now, after deciding to act as his own lawyer in the penalty phase of his prosecution and turning away psychiatric or psychological evidence that could save him from the death penalty, unsealed documents have revealed that Roof finds it "not fair" to have to listen to testimony from survivors and relatives of his victims.
From The Washington Post: "Dylann Roof wrote in a court filing unsealed Thursday that it was 'not fair' for prosecutors to present such extensive testimony about the effect of his church shooting here on victims’ family members, arguing — because he was not presenting any evidence — that it would virtually ensure a death sentence." This seems to be contradicted by the fact that Roof's public lack of remorse and his refusal to consult with experts in the field make it seem like he is begging for the death penalty.
“If I don’t present any mitigation evidence, the victim-impact evidence will take over the whole sentencing trial and guarantee that I get the death penalty,” Roof wrote.
U.S. District Judge Richard M. Gergel has not made any stipulations about the extent of the testimony which can be offered, but has voiced his concerns: “I’m concerned both about the number of witnesses and the length of their testimony and the length collectively of their testimony, and I want you to revisit your strategy here, because at some point I’m going to cut you off if it gets too long,” he had said to prosecutors.
“Allowing so much of this testimony violates due process and the Eighth Amendment, and should not be allowed,” Roof had written in a motion. “The prosecution can call more victim witnesses at my formal sentencing, once the jury has already decided on what sentence I should get, but in front of the jury, there should be some limit on the number and types of victim witnesses who can testify to help the government get a death sentence.”
As many as 38 witnesses may be called in the trial.
[Photo: Getty Images]
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