Here are some statements issued following the sentencing of Dylann Roof:
U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch
“On June 17, 2015, Dylann Storm Roof sought out and opened fire on African-American parishioners engaged in worship and bible study at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina. He did so because of their race. And he did so to interfere with their peaceful exercise of religion.
The victims in the case led lives as compassionate civic and religious leaders; devoted public servants and teachers; and beloved family members and friends. They include a young man in the bloom of youth and an 87-year-old grandmother who still sang in the church choir. We remember those who have suffered, and especially those that lost their lives: Cynthia Graham Hurd, 54; Susie Jackson, 87; Ethel Lance, 70; Rev. DePayne Middleton Doctor, 49; Rev. Clementa Pinckney, 41; Tywanza Sanders, 26; Rev. Daniel Simmons Sr., 74; Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, 45; and Myra Thompson, 59.
“… A jury of his peers considered the actions Roof took on that fateful day, and they rendered a verdict that will hold him accountable for his choices.
“No verdict can bring back the nine we lost that day at Mother Emanuel. And no verdict can heal the wounds of the five church members who survived the attack or the souls of those who lost loved ones to Roof’s callous hand. But we hope that the completion of the prosecution provides the people of Charleston – and the people of our nation – with a measure of closure. We thank the jurors for their service, the people of Charleston for their strength and support, and the law enforcement community in South Carolina and throughout the country for their vital work on this case.”
Gov. Nikki Haley
"It is my hope that the survivors, the families, and the people of South Carolina can find some peace in the fact that justice has been served."
Congressman Mark Sanford
“My prayers continue to go out to the families affected in the wake of this tragedy. Their actions inspired people both at home in South Carolina -- and around the world on the remarkable power that comes in forgiveness.
“(The) verdict brings closure in the wake of remarkable tragedy. I am thankful that our legal processes have worked and that justice has been done in the wake of the unspeakable events that occurred at the hand of Mr. Roof at the Mother Emanuel AME church at home in Charleston.”
U.S. Sen. Tim Scott
“Nineteen months ago, a heartless murderer attempted to start a race war. He believed the damage his racist hands wrought would undo Charleston, South Carolina, and maybe even the nation.
Today that man was rightly sentenced to death. I want to thank the jurors for their service during this agonizing case.
As we heard the testimony of survivors and the families of those killed and injured at Mother Emanuel throughout this trial, they once again left me in awe. Hearing firsthand recollections of that night, learning even more about how much the families of those killed loved and cared for them, I am sure I am not the only one overwhelmed with emotion.
While we can never bring back the Emanuel 9, we can ensure their legacy will live on forever. We will continue to stand behind the families, and their message of unity. Today is a pivotal moment in their road towards some sort of closure, and we will all be there with them on that journey.
To the families of the Emanuel 9, I say thank you. In your loss, you have given all of us more than we ever thought possible.”
S.C. Democratic Party Chair Jaime Harrison
"After facing a jury of South Carolinians, the perpetrator of this horrific crime received the harshest penalty that our justice system imposes. (The) sentence sends the clear message that racism, bigotry, and violence have absolutely no place in our society. With the sentencing phase complete, let us continue to comfort the families and friends of the 9 souls that were taken from us as well as those who survived the evil act. The attack on them was an attack on us all, and we must move forward in solidarity to overcome the demons we still face."