Dylann Roof's Lying Friend Joey Meek Gets 27 Months

Roof's friend gets 27 months for failing to report shooting plan

The man who brushed off Dylann Roof's scheme to kill black church worshipers in Charleston, then admitted to doing nothing when the attack came to fruition was sentenced Tuesday to two years and three months in federal prison.

Roof drew the death sentence for killing nine people in June 2015 at Emanuel AME church. They drifted apart after Roof moved away in high school, then reconnected months before the shooting when Roof told Meek on Facebook that he saw his old friend's mugshot online.

Federal prosecutors say Meek had lied to the FBI about knowing of Roof's plot.

Meek was the only other person charged in the shooting.

But after Roof opened fire during a Bible study meeting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, slaying nine parishioners, Meek did not immediately report what he knew, prosecutors said.

But then he had second thoughts: "Prior to Roof waking up, Meek ended up putting the firearm back into the trunk of Roof's vehicle because Meek was on probation for a felony offense and was concerned about being caught with a weapon".

"I'm really, really sorry".

After the killings took place, Meek said he suspected Roof may be the suspect. "You can't tell me you would". But sentencing guidelines for misprision, considered his most serious charge, had called for between 27 and 33 months behind bars. The government wanted a stiffer sentence to make an example out of Meek and because he could have stopped the massacre.

No family members of the victims spoke at sentencing.

Meek signed a deal with prosecutors in 2016, agreeing to plead guilty to lying to authorities and failure to report a crime. He violated the law only after the massacre when he told others not to report that Roof was the likely killer.

Prosecutors earlier filed a motion for harsher sentencing, saying Meek could have helped prevent the frightful tragedy that killed nine if had he reported his friend's plans.

Meek's attorney, Deborah Barbier, had argued that her client was "not equipped to anticipate Roof's capabilities or acts", according to The Post and Courier.

If Meek "had just gone in his bedroom and cried and regretted not reporting, he would have committed no federal crime", Gergel said.

Meek told the Federal Bureau of Investigation that he didn't report the conversation or call police even after hearing about the shootings in Charleston because he was on probation for burglary and was anxious he would get in more trouble.

That night, authorities said, Meek learned on social media about what happened.

Meek's lawyer told the Associated Press before his sentencing that Meek wrote letters of apology to the families of Roof's victims and that he feels very bad about it. "I ask for your forgiveness, but I don't expect it".



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