A survivor of Dylann Roof's deadly rampage through a historically black Charleston, S.C. church said in court that she was spared - because Roof had another plan for her.
"Did I shoot you yet?" he asked as she hid under the table. When he realized he had not, he told her, "You're going to tell the story." Polly Sheppard did exactly that on Wednesday as Roof's federal murder trial continued, CNN reports.
WATCH | A video of Roof taking target practice was also released Wednesday.
Sheppard also outlined other heroics by Roof's victims at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. Rev. Daniel Simmons tried to tackle Roof before getting shot. Tywanza Sanders tried to convince him to stop.
Roof responded by saying he "had to do it. You're raping our women, raping the nation," Sheppard testified. Then Roof shot and killed him.
Roof's defense attorney David Bruck had no questions for Sheppard, only an apology. Roof initially requested to represent himself, but changed his mind.
Roof said he was inspired to carry out his heinous act when Trayvon Martin was killed by George Zimmerman (pictured) in 2012, saying it was "obvious" that Zimmerman was in the right. He said black people have lower IQs and impulse control.
I have no choice. I am not in the position to, alone, go into the ghetto and fight.
Roof said he wanted to start a race war, starting with the church. He targeted Charleston specifically for its history and high percentage of black people.
In his writings revealed at the trial, Roof also condemned Hispanics ("obviously a huge problem") and Jews ("They are enigma.")
Closing arguments are expected Thursday. If Roof is convicted, sentencing will begin in January. He has pleaded not guilty to 33 federal charges, many tied to hate crimes.
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