UPDATE: Dylann Storm Roof, the 21-year-old white male who authorities say opened fire on a historic black church in Charleston, is now in custody after someone spotted his car in Shelby, North Carolina and called the cops, BlackMediaScoop.com reports.
Law enforcement officials from around the state are requesting the public’s assistance in locating a man who is believed to have shot and killed nine parishioners at a Charleston-area church Wednesday evening, TheState.com reports.
Charleston police officials say a white male suspect standing about 5 feet 9 inches tall with a slender build entered the Emanuel AME church located at 110 Calhoun Street in Charleston at around 8 p.m. The suspect then opened fire on members of the church, killing six women and three men. The suspect is believed to have then fled the area in a black, four-door sedan.
Fox News reported this:
Among the dead was the church’s pastor, state Sen. Clementa Pinckney, 41, who had been a pastor since he was 18. Pinckney was the youngest African-American elected to the South Carolina legislature when he won office in 1996 at age 23 and had been a state senator since 2000. The other victims were not immediately identified.
Meanwhile, Christians from around the nation offered prayers for the church members. Franklin Graham posted this response on Facebook:
Our hearts go out to all the members of Charleston’s Emanuel A.M.E. Church, the families of the victims, and the Charleston community in the wake of last night’s #Charlestonshooting at their Wednesday night prayer meeting. Nine lives tragically lost, including their pastor and South Carolina State Senator, Reverend Clementa Pinckney. Join me in praying for them and that the person responsible will be brought to justice quickly.