A source close to the investigation says the suspect in a Charleston AME church shooting that killed nine Wednesday night was captured Thursday in Shelby, N.C.
Authorities named 21-year-old Dylann Storm Roof, of the Columbia area, as the suspect in the shooting that killed nine, including state Sen. Clementa Pinckney, a longtime South Carolina legislator who was pastor of the church.
Law enforcement agencies were gathered Thursday off U.S. 76/378 midway between Columbia and Sumter in apparent connection with the search for the suspect.
The President of Allen University in Columbia confirmed that a second of its alumni, in addition to state Sen. Clementa Pinckney, is among the victims killed in the shooting, which happened around 9 p.m. Wednesday at the historic Emanuel AME church in downtown Charleston.
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A statement from university president Lady June Cole names Tywanza Sanders as one of the deceased. He was a 2014 Allen graduate in business administration.
“He was a quiet, well-known student who was committed to his education,” Cole said. “He presented a warm and helpful spirit as he interacted with his colleagues. Mr. Sanders was participating in the Bible Study session at Mother Emanuel church at the time of the shooting.”
Cole described Sanders as an outgoing student with an “inkling toward entrepreneurship.”
“We're in mourning, and we are praying for the families of the victims,” Cole said. "We hope that everyone will just respect their loss as well."
Nine people died following the shooting Wednesday night. An active search for the suspect continued overnight and into the day Thursday.
According to Reuters News Service, the suspect’s uncle, Carson Cowles, said the suspect was given a .45-caliber pistol by his father as a 21st birthday present in April.
Cowles said he recognized Roof in a photo released by police and described him as quiet and soft-spoken, according to Reuters.
Storm was charged with first-offense drug possession in Lexington County in March, according to court records. The case status is listed as pending.
According to Lexington 1 school district officials, Roof attended Carolina Springs Middle School in eighth grade and White Knoll High School in ninth grade.
On Roof’s Facebook page, he is listed as friends with a number of African Americans.