WASHINGTON, Jan. 10 (Xinhua) -- The gunman who killed nine black churchgoers in 2015 was sentenced to death by a federal jury Tuesday.
Dylann Roof, 22, was found guilty of 33 counts of crime, including hate crime, the jury concluded after a two-phase trial.
Roof, who had admitted that his actions were driven by racial hate, did not show any sign of remorse during the trial and denied that he had mental health problems.
The execution of death penalties is currently on hold due to concerns over injection drugs, which means it could be years before Roof is put to death.
Nine people were killed in the evening of June 17, 2015 at an African-American church in Charleston, South Carolina in what the authorities described as "a hate crime" by a white gunman, later identified as Roof.
According to the police, Roof stayed at a prayer meeting for almost one hour before opening fire. A law enforcement official was quoted by the U.S. TV network CNN as saying that witnesses told them that the suspect said he was at the church "to shoot black people."
Roof was captured by police on the following morning of the shooting.
The case sparked wide anger in the U.S. society and an effort to root out remaining traces of racism in the Southern U.S. state. The confederate flag was removed from the statehouse as a result of the shooting.