CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) – Dylann Roof’s lawyers said his mother suffered a heart attack after listening to opening statements in her son’s death penalty trial.
Roof’s mother collapsed as she tried to stand after prosecutor Jay Richardson detailed what he said was Roof’s cold and calculated plan to kill nine black people in a Charleston church in a racially motivated attack.
She said “I’m sorry” several times as family members and court security came to help.
The filing did not give her current condition.
Roof’s lawyers detailed the heart attack in a request Thursday for a mistrial because of the emotional testimony of the first day of his death penalty trial.
U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel denied the request and testimony continued Thursday.
Sitting in an eerily silent courtroom, jurors saw stark 360-degree computer views of the crime scene in the fellowship hall at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston.
The scenes were shown for more than 30 minutes during Roof’s trial. They showed the victims lying in pools of blood near the circular tables where they were conducting a Bible study. Bullet casings and gun magazines were strewn around the scene.
Jurors also viewed dashcam video from two police cruisers showing the apprehension of Roof.
Two Shelby officers testified during Roof’s death penalty trial on Thursday that he surrendered to police without incident and did not oppose extradition back to South Carolina.
One video shows Roof’s car being pulled over and Roof being escorted back to a police cruiser in handcuffs.
Officers said they found a pistol beneath a pillow in the car after Roof told them he had a gun.
Testimony has concluded for the day in Roof’s federal trial in which he faces 33 counts, including hate crimes, stemming from the church shootings.