Dylann Roof's Competency Is Once Again Being Questioned

Roof has dismissed all of his lawyers five days before the penalty phase is set to begin.

By Eric Shorey

Dylann Roof has already been found guilty of opening fire on a black church in Charleston, South Carolina. Now, approaching the penalty phase of the trial, Roof's competency is being questioned. Roof had previously asked to represent himself during the upcoming stage of the proceedings.

From USA Today: "Standby counsel for Dylann Roof, 22, filed a motion under seal Thursday asking Judge Richard Gergel of U.S. District Court in Charleston determine whether the defendant is competent to proceed with the sentencing phase. Gergel granted that motion and scheduled the competency hearing for Monday, a federal holiday, with jurors expected to reconvene for the sentencing phase Tuesday."

Back in November, Roof had opted out of having lawyers speak on his behalf. Roof is now saying that he plans on giving an opening statement but has no interest in calling witnesses to the stand, consulting with mental health experts, or presenting evidence in his defense. Testimony from mental health experts had the potential to sway the jury away from giving Roof the death penalty.

The sentencing will begin in five days and Roof has dismissed all of his lawyers.

Roof likely believes himself to be sane and competent while his legal team does not. 

[Photo: Getty Images]


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