Competency trial for Dylann Roof ends, judge to determine if trial resumes

Published: Nov. 23, 2016 at 1:20 AM EST|Updated: Nov. 25, 2016 at 2:30 PM EST
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CHARLESTON, SC (WIS) - After two days, the competency hearing for Dylann Roof is over.

Judge Richard Gergel will soon decide whether or not Roof is competent to stand trial. Roof faces charges in both federal and state court for the deadly shooting of nine parishioners at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston in 2015.

All of the proceedings happened behind closed doors away from the public and away from the media. Therefore, details are extremely limited.

WIS has learned Gergel will retire to his chambers and work on the order and announce his decision over the Thanksgiving break, which begins Wednesday. If Roof is found to be not competent, he will not be released or set free. Instead, he will be turned over to federal custody where professionals will attempt to make him mentally competent for however long it takes.

A simple mental ailment will not be enough to declare a defendant not competent.

"You can be what you and I deem 'crazy,'" said attorney Mark Peper. "No one would commit this type of crime without being somewhat crazy. That's not the legal definition of mental incapacity. The legal definition is, do you know, as you sit here today, understand why you're here, what elements are going to be attempted to be proved against you, and can you effectively communicate with your attorneys in an effort to assist with your defense."

Jury selection was set for next Monday pending the outcome of the competency hearing.

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