Friend of Accused S.C. Church Shooter Charged

     (CN) – A friend of accused Charleston, S.C., church shooter Dylann Roof has been indicted on charges of concealing information about the June incident, which left nine people dead, including his advance knowledge of the plot.
     Joseph Carlton Meek, who had opened his home to Roof in the days before the murders, and gave numerous media interviews after it, has been charged with misprision of a felony and making false statements.
     He was scheduled to appear before a federal judge in Columbia, S.C., Friday morning.
     Roof is accused of shooting nine people to death and wounding several others during a bible study class on June 17 at the Emanuel A.M.E. Church in downtown Charleston.
     He has been charged with nine state counts of murder, three of attempted murder and a firearms count, and has also been indicted on 33 federal charges, including hate crimes and religious freedom violations.
     In early September, Ninth Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson, who is prosecuting the state’s case, said he intends to pursue the death penalty. Federal prosecutors have yet to announce whether they will follow suit or not.
     According to the indictment, Meek made “materially false, fictitious and fraudulent statements” when he was questioned by an FBI special agent about Root the day after the shooting.
     Specifically, the indictment says, Meek lied when he told the agent he didn’t know of his friend’s plans to shoot members of the church.
     He is accused of concealed Root’s plan and of failing to make it known to authorities.
     According to account Roof’s pre-shooting activities published by The Washington Post last Sunday, the alleged murderer slept on the floor of the Meek family trailer for several weeks before the shooting. At the time, in addition to Joey Meek, the trailer was occupied by two of Meek’s brothers, his mother and a girlfriend.If convicted, Meek faces up to three years in prison on the misprision county, and five years in prison on the false statement charge.

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