A friend of Dylann Roof, the gunman who killed nine African-Americans at the Mother Emanuel Church in Charleston, South Carolina in June, has been arrested by the FBI for allegedly having prior knowledge of the gunman’s plans a week before the shooting took place.
According to The State, Joseph “Joey” Meek Jr. was arrested on Thursday after receiving a letter about being a “potential target” in the criminal investigation involving Roof. Meek, his girlfriend Lindsey Fry, and others, have been providing the FBI with information since Roof was arrested.
Meek says Roof asked to stay with him in his mobile trailer four months ago, and mentioned his plans for the attack on the church during one of their drinking sessions.
The State reports:
Meek told The State reporters in late June that on June 10, while he, Roof and their friend Christon Scriven were getting drunk on vodka, Roof announced plans to carry out a mass shooting seven days later at the College of Charleston.
Though they thought the talk was drunken bluster, Scriven and Meek were concerned enough that they went out to Roof’s car and took Roof’s handgun, hiding it until they all sobered up, Meek said.
They gave it back to Roof at Fry’s urging, she told reporters in June. She said Meek was on probation and she didn’t want him to get caught carrying a gun.
The charges against Meek are as yet unknown, but he was expected to be arraigned today at the federal courthouse in Columbia. Meek gave an interview to The State on Tuesday, claiming he was only guilty of opening up his doors to Roof, an old classmate of his.
He also didn’t sincerely believe Roof’s plans to start an alleged “race war” (as read in his 23-page-long manifesto) since he was cordial with Meek’s African-American friends and took Fry to a strip club, where he paid for a private dance with a Black exotic dancer, the report says.
Finally, Fry said, Roof took her once to a strip club and appeared especially infatuated with a black stripper, even asking for a private dance and going up to a stage where black strippers danced. “He put money on the stage” so they would come over and dance in front of him, she said.
Meek’s mother, Kim Konzny, said her 21-year-old provided authorities with all the information he had.
“I’m worried, but then I’m not worried because I know my son didn’t do anything wrong,” Konzny said. “He shouldn’t have gotten arrested.”
If Meek is charged with concealment of knowledge, he could face three to five years in prison. Some critics claim the charges Meek might face will not warrant prison time.
Roof has been charged with nine counts of murder and three counts of attempted murder. Ninth Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson is seeking the death penalty, but federal authorities have not yet announced their decision.
SOURCE: The State | VIDEO CREDIT: NDN