Dylann Roof Gripes on 'Harsh' Treatment, Does This to Protest

Mass murderer went on hunger strike after he says he was 'targeted by staff' in Indiana federal prison
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 26, 2020 9:50 AM CST
Dylann Roof: I Went on Hunger Strike for 'Harsh' Treatment
In this April 10, 2017, file photo, Dylann Roof arrives to a courtroom at the Charleston County Judicial Center in Charleston, SC.   (Grace Beahm/The Post And Courier via AP, Pool, File)

In a Feb. 13 letter, mass murderer Dylann Roof told the AP he was "several days" into a hunger strike in protest of "harsh" treatment inside a federal prison in Indiana. The 25-year-old white supremacist said he'd been "targeted by staff," "verbally harassed and abused without cause," and "treated disproportionately harsh," adding staff felt justified in this behavior "since I am hated by the general public." A person familiar with the matter who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity said only that Roof had been on a hunger strike of unknown length, but that it had since ended. In another letter dated Feb. 16, Roof said the strike had ended Feb. 14 after corrections officers tried to forcibly acquire a blood sample and inserted an IV in his arm.

Roof, who described passing out briefly, said he'd been targeted by a Bureau of Prisons disciplinary hearing officer over previous complaints that he was refused access to the prison's law library and a copy machine. "I feel confident I could have gone much, much longer without food," wrote Roof, who shot and killed nine black people at a Bible study gathering at a church in Charleston, SC, in 2015. "It's just not worth being murdered over." Roof's lawyers, who are appealing his federal convictions and death sentence, say they're "working with BOP to resolve the issues addressed in the letters." The AP notes the allegations contained in the letters couldn't be verified. (More Dylann Roof stories.)

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