Last-minute questions about Dylann Roof’s competency to stand trial have prompted another delay in the Emanuel AME Church shooter’s federal death penalty case, this time pushing jury selection back to the week of Thanksgiving, reports the Charleston Post and Courier. U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel postponed proceedings until Nov. 21. He did not identify the nature of the competency question or why it has arisen now.
The killer’s evaluation is underway and expected to be completed on Nov. 14. Gergel will hold a hearing on Nov. 16 and rule on the competency issue within two days. The move came one day after a sealed motion halted plans to begin jury selection Monday morning. The Post and Courier reporter asked Gergel to provide a recording or transcript after the hearing detailing all matters that did not fall within the bounds of attorney-client privilege. Roof, 22, is accused of gunning down nine parishioners during the closing prayer at Emanuel AME Church’s Bible study in June last year. Authorities contend he targeted his victims because they were black.