Yesterday, the jury unanimously decided that the death penalty was the proper punishment for Dylann Ro's hate-fueled murder nine people at an African-American church in Charleston, SC in June 2015. Earlier today, Judge Richard Gergel proceeded with the formal sentencing. Before he was ficially sentenced to death, Ro was forced to endure addresses from family members those he killed and from members the congregation the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, the site the massacre.
After the ficial verdict, Ro requested that he be given a 90-day extension in the time allotted for him to file a motion for a new trial. In his request, he cited past federal death penalty cases in which such an extension had been granted. The judge ended up partly granting Ro's motion for an extension, not allowing for 90 days but giving him until Feb. 10 to file a motion for a new trial.
Ro also wished to file a motion for new counsel -- a request that was reportedly denied by Judge Gergel, who said, "I feel it would be a great loss resources and talent."
Chad Mills WIS News 10 was present for the entirety today's proceedings, and he live-tweeted the statements that were read to Ro from the families the victims and the members Emanuel A.M.E. Their words ranged dramatically in tone and intent, with some wishing Hell upon Ro, and others, such as Reverend Eric Manning -- who joined Emanuel A.M.E. in Summer 2016 -- pleading with him to seek redemption.
Below are just some the victim impact statements. See the full recap here.