The mass murderer convicted of a 2015 shooting at a Charleston, South Carolina, wants to fire his appellate lawyers as one is Indian and the other is Jewish, according to The State.
The State on Monday reported that Dylann Roof informed the judges who will hear his appeal of the request in a letter to the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals.
“My two currently appointed attorneys, Alexandra Yates and Apna Mirchandani, are Jewish and Indian, respectively,” he wrote.
“Because of my political views, which are arguable religious, it would be impossible for me to trust two attorneys that are my political and biological enemies.”
Some Twitter users on Tuesday criticized Roof for seeking his legal team’s ouster on the basis of race.
The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals – which is located in Richmond, Virginia – on Tuesday denied Roof’s request in a curt, one-sentence statement.
“The court denies the motion for substitution of counsel on appeal,” said the court’s order, which was filed by 4th Circuit clerk Patricia Connor.
Roof mailed his request to the 4th Circuit court from the federal prison in Terre Haute, Indiana, were he is currently imprisoned.
A federal jury last January recommended that Roof be executed after a two-week trial in Charleston.
Evidence presented during the trial showed that Roof turned radical after viewing pro-Nazi and white supremacist internet sites.
Roof opened fire at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church in Charleston in 2015, killing nine people and wounding three more during a prayer service there.
The Columbia, South Carolina man has since claimed he targeted the historically black church in the hopes of sparking a race war in the U.S.
Roof, who has shown no remorse for the killings, hoped that the conflict would ultimately result in a white supremacist government. He is now 23 years old.