Dylann Roof was attacked by a fellow inmate Thursday morning while preparing to enter the showers at the Charleston County detention center where he is being held on charges stemming from last year’s shooting at Emanuel AME Church.
Roof’s attacker, identified as Dwayne Stafford of Goose Creek, is said to have exited his cell and ran to Roof, striking him in the face and body. Authorities say Roof was not seriously injured. County Sheriff Al Cannon said that Roof and his attorney are not currently planning to pursue charges against his attacker.
According to Cannon, Stafford should have been locked in his cell, and investigators are examining the door locks to determine if there was any type of equipment malfunction. At the time of the attack, one of the two guards on duty had taken a break, and the other was delivering toilet paper to another prisoner. Coupled with the unlocked cell, this proved to be just enough of an opportunity for Stafford to reach Roof. Cannon said the two men were quickly separated by the guards after the fight began.
“It seems to me pretty obvious at this point that at the very least we have complacency, which is one of the, for police officers and detention officers, one of the biggest challenges that I think we face and is a factor in the events that occur out there,” said Cannon, who described the incident as a wake-up call. “We do things day in and day out and they become routine, and as a result of that we become complacent.”
Cannon said that this is the first incident of this sort involving Roof since he was taken into custody. More information is still being collected regarding the circumstances that led to the attack.
“We have adequate policies in place,” said Cannon. “It’s a matter of making sure folks stay at a heightened state or awareness and follow those policies and procedures, and they do what they need to do to stay on top of these very serious inmates.” Keep the City Paper free We don't have a paywall. Each week's printed issue is free. We're local, independent and free. Let's keep it this way. Please consider a donation of $100 to keep the City Paper free. Donate: chscp.us
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