Attorneys for man charged in church shootings seek evidence

Charleston shooting suspect Dylann Roof is escorted from the Shelby Police Department after his arrest on June 18.

Defense attorneys for Dylann Roof filed a motion Thursday seeking access to evidence contained by prosecutors regarding the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church shooting that killed nine black parishioners in June.

The court documents, which were signed by 9th Circuit Public Defender Ashley Pennington and filed in Charleston County, requested all documents, tangible objects, witness statements, physical evidence, police recordings and other evidence relevant to the case.

A judge will rule on the motion, a procedural move typical in criminal cases, on a later date.

The court filing came a week after 9th Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson announced that she will seek the death penalty on the nine counts of murder faced by the 21-year-old Eastover man.

“This was the ultimate crime,” Wilson said at a news conference Sept. 3, “and justice from our state calls for the ultimate punishment.”

Pennington declined to comment on the developments at that time.

Roof also faces 33 federal charges for alleged hate crimes and religious rights violations.

Attorneys are scheduled to discuss the federal case Nov. 2, according to documents filed in U.S. District Court. Jury selection will begin Nov. 3 in the federal case, records show.

Reach Christina Elmore at 937-5908.