A gunman opened fire killing nine people in a race-hate crime at the 150-year-old Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal church in Charleston, South Carolina. The gunman let one woman escape at the African American church so she could tell the world what happened. A five-year-old girl also survived by playing dead after the suspect, a white man in his twenties, stormed a weekly bible study group and opened fire on the room.
Eight of the victims died at the scene, and one later in a hospital. At least one injured person is being treated in a hospital. Rev. Clementa Pinckney, pastor of the church and South Carolina state senator, is among the dead and his sister has also reportedly been shot. The city is now on lockdown as a police in bullet-proof vests launch a huge manhunt to find the killer, who entered the church and sat down quietly before suddenly standing up and opening fire.
According to Dot Scott, president of the Charleston NAACP, a female survivor told her family members the gunman came into the church at around 9pm on June 17th.