WASHINGTON, D.C., June 18, 2015 – John Nonna, co-chair of the national Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law’s (Lawyers’ Committee) board of directors and trustees, and Tanya Clay House, public policy director, released the following statement in response to the killing of nine people at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C.:
“The Lawyers’ Committee is saddened by Wednesday’s tragic shooting deaths of nine innocent people attending a prayer service at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C.
We applaud today’s announcement that the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, the FBI, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of South Carolina are opening up a hate crime investigation into the shooting, an investigation parallel to and cooperative with the state’s investigation.
We decry the alleged racial motivations of the alleged shooter and remain hopeful that justice will prevail in this case.
The Lawyers’ Committee and the nationwide nonpartisan Election Protection Coalition have worked with partners and residents in South Carolina on voting rights. We extend deep condolences to victims’ families, congregants of Emanuel AME Church, and the diverse communities of South Carolina and call for continued peace throughout this process.”