- The Washington Times - Friday, September 18, 2015

A friend of the white man who fatally shot nine black churchgoers in Charleston, South Carolina, has been indicted on two criminal counts, accused of failing to report the shooter’s plans and making false statements to law enforcement officials who were investigating the shootings.

U.S. Attorney for South Carolina Bill Nettles on Friday announced the charges that were filed against 21-year-old Joseph Carlton Meek, which include failure to report a felony and making false statements to an FBI agent.

The accused gunman, Dylann Roof, had stayed at Mr. Meek’s home in the days before the June 17 shootings at Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal. According to accounts that Mr. Meek gave to The Associated Press after the shooting, Mr. Roof had drunkenly complained while staying with Mr. Meek’s family that “blacks were taking over the world” and “someone needed to do something about it for the white race.”

Prosecutors say Mr. Roof attended a Bible study at the church and then opened fire on the black attendees, making a “racially inflammatory statement” as he stood over one of the survivors.

The indictment charges that Mr. Meek had knowledge of Mr. Roof’s plans and did not report those to authorities and that after the shootings he told an FBI agent that “he did not know specifics of Dylann Roof’s plan to shoot individuals.”

The charges against Mr. Meek are punishable by up to five years in prison.

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