Today marks the beginning of mass murderer Dylann Roof’s criminal trial where prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for the murder of nine African Americans.

The man who murdered 9 churchgoers in Charleston, South Carolina in 2015 is now preparing to face trial. Today, jury selection will begin for the trial – it could take as long as two weeks to complete.

Roof and his attorneys have agreed to plead guilty if prosecutors drop the death penalty, but it is unclear if they are considering that offer.

Since the shooting in mid-2015, investigators have uncovered a massive plot by Roof to target particular, elderly members of a specific black church. Evidence shows that Roof took a white supremacist tour of nearby former slave plantations, taking photos near landmarks and reveling in the misery of the previous generations.

At the conclusion of his sick tour, Roof entered a predominantly black church in Charleston, South Carolina. Roof was welcomed into the church and sat through part of the ceremony before he opened fire, killing 9.

The families of those killed by Roof offer mixed feelings about the possible death sentence being handed down. The community has come together to support survivors of the victims, preparing meals and offering emotional support for the duration of the trial.

The case could drag on through the new year, meaning we may not see a satisfactory conclusion in the case of Roof’s trial for quite some time.

Sydney Robinson is a political writer for the Ring of Fire Network. She has also appeared in political news videos for Ring of Fire. Sydney has a degree in English Literature from the University of West Florida, and has an active interest in politics, social justice, and environmental issues. She would love to hear from you on Twitter @SydneyMkay or via email at