This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," June 18, 2015. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
SEAN HANNITY, HOST: This is a Fox News Alert. The city of Charleston, South Carolina, is mourning tonight after a mass shooting at a historically black church that left nine people dead last night. The suspect, identified as 21-year-old Dylann Roof, was arrested earlier today some 240 miles away in Shelby, North Carolina. He has now been flown back to Charleston to face charges. Now, police are still trying to determine a motive, but it appears to be racially charged.
Joining us now live at the scene of the arrest in North Carolina is our own Mike Tobin -- Mike.
MIKE TOBIN, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, Sean, this really is a remarkable example of the authorities, the media and the public working together. And that's why you arrived at that rapid arrest, with Dylann Roof being taken into custody here in Shelby before 11:00 o'clock this morning.
Now, this is where he made his initial appearance, this is also where the Shelby police chief said the tip that got him arrested came from a business. We now know that business was a florist or a flower shop, and the tip really goes back to one of employees, Debbie Dills, who was driving to work late. She spotted that 2000 Hyundai Elantra on the road. She had seen it all over the airwaves, all over the news. She drove up close and got a look at that bowl haircut on Roof, also that she had seen on the air.
So she made a call, not initially to police. She called her boss at the flower shop. He called police, and that's why the chief said the call from a business.
She pulled away initially, and she said she felt compelled to keep on following that Hyundai. She stayed on the phone with her boss, traveled ultimately 35 miles until she arrived at a point where police were lining the road with their lights flashing.
And Roof was taken into custody without major incident. She said he never drove fast, never drove erratically, he just kept on driving.
And incidentally, in her interview, Debbie Dills said that she prayed a lot, and she believes that God put her in position to make that call, Sean.
HANNITY: All right, Mike Tobin, thank you.
It has been a very emotional day in South Carolina. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. NIKKI HALEY, R-S.C.: We woke up today, and the heart and soul of South Carolina was broken. And so we have some grieving to do and we've got some pain we have to go through. Parents are having to explain to their kids how they can go to church and feel safe, and that is not something we ever thought we'd deal with.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Governor Nikki Haley, her emotions very understandable.
And tonight, we're learning more about the alleged shooter. Twenty- one-year-old mass shooting suspect Dylann Roof was reportedly arrested for a different incident just a few months ago, and police charged him with possessing a controlled substance. Now, some reports indicate that the drug found on him is used to treat opiate addiction.
Joining me now are Dr. Keith Ablow, and on the ground in South Carolina tonight, Fox News senior correspondent Geraldo Rivera.
Dr. Ablow, let's start with this opiate drug that we're talking about that is, I guess, a substitute drug that's being reported that he might have -- might have taken here. And also, we've had so many of these incidents, one after another, Sandy Hook, Columbine and Aurora, where we keep looking at the medicines these kids are on, the drugs that they're taking, the psych drugs they're taking.
In the end, are we going to find this is another case of that?
DR. KEITH ABLOW, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, Sean, suboxone is an opiate. It's combined with another medicine that treats opiate addiction if it's an overdose. And so the combination of the two acts a little bit like methadone, and you can stay on suboxone without more and more and more if you used to be on, say, oxycodone pills or percocet or heroin and getting tolerant to it and using more and more. Number...
HANNITY: All right, but Dr. Ablow, so you're basically replacing one opiate for another. If you're on oxycontin or oxycodone, then you take this suboxone...
HANNITY: ... aren't you substituting one opiate for another, except you don't need the increase in doses, is what you're saying?
ABLOW: That's exactly right. It's very much like methadone in that regard.
HANNITY: So it's like methadone? All right.
ABLOW: However -- yes. However, some people procure this on the streets to get high and people trade it. It is a drug of abuse, as well. They'll trade it for other drugs.
And so what we seem to know about this young man is that he either needed this to detox from an opiate, or he procured it on the street. Either way, he has a history of some kind of drug dependence or drug abuse and...
HANNITY: So how can a drug that is prescribed to get off opiates be abused, then?
ABLOW: Well, because addicts are cagey and they will swap this stuff -- they'll trade it for other kinds of street drugs. And you know, what I've learned in 20 years practicing psychiatry is that where there's one street drug, or even one drug that's used to treat addiction, there may well be others. And there are so many designer drugs now that you'd want to know that about this person. Were there other drugs involved?
My gut feeling on these psychiatric drugs present at these violent scenes is that more psychiatry was needed, not less, that there was not enough in the way of a holding (ph) environment.
HANNITY: But Columbine, Aurora, Sandy Hook...
HANNITY: And there's this mysterious reluctance and resistance to reveal this to the public, and often, it's a long time after the incidents occur that we actually find out about it, but it happens often. So you're saying that maybe these drugs are prescribed but not monitored, and you suspect, based on this earlier drug arrest, that this could have played a part.
ABLOW: Well, it certainly could have. And I think the fact that they're involved in these events doesn't mean they caused them. In fact, it might mean that these folks are psychiatrically ill but not getting as much help as they need. So we need to tease it apart. I agree, Sean, we should look very deeply into it.
HANNITY: All right, let me go to Geraldo. Geraldo, we do know some things here. We know that one survivor begged him to stop. Another survivor was allowed to live and he was -- and was told, I'm going to let you live because I want you to tell the world what happened, another case where one of these shooters wants fame.
And apparently, the shooter said, I have to do it, you rape our women, you're taking over our country, you have to go, which indicates perhaps, with this historically black church, that this is racially motivated.
So my question to you is -- you know, I know we often go into the psychology of people that commit these crimes, but this sounds to me that somebody that can walk into a church, sit in a bible study for an hour -- it's just pure, unadulterated evil to me. And -- and that's what's in the heart of this person, and there's no amount of gun control that's going to stop that. Your thoughts.
GERALDO RIVERA, FOX NEWS SENIOR CORRESPONDENT: I absolutely agree. This was a racist Judas. This was a man who inculcated (sic) himself into the parishioners, these wonderful people at a prayer meeting here at this historic church, the Mother Emanuel AME church, the second oldest AME church in the country.
This was a person that seeped (sic) of evil, that he may have used drugs or was high at the time. I don't know anything about that.
But I do know that he sat for an hour with these people. He looked in the eyes of the pastor and the other people, pretending to care about their bible studies, to be a sincere adherent to Christianity and the values of Christianity, when instead, he was plotting the entire time this savage murder!
And then you talk about the utterance -- I'm here because you're raping our women and taking over our country. This is a pathological, sick person. This is -- this is just like a member of the KKK without the hood. You know, this is Charles Manson. This is -- this is someone who tried to start a race war, you know, by slaughtering innocents, Sean. This is a despicable human being, and I...
HANNITY: I agree with you. Dr....
RIVERA: ... don't even give him credit for being sick!
HANNITY: Dr. Ablow, we can psychoanalyze this kid's brain from now until the cows come home, but...
HANNITY: ... he had -- he had -- obviously had a racist intention. And there's something inherently evil and dark about a human being that can sit there in a prayer environment with people for an hour, getting to know their good heart, and then pull out a weapon and just start firing!
ABLOW: Listen, you know, Sean, most -- in my opinion, right, and this is a great philosophical debate. It's a great debate to have on your show. It's very high-minded. Most evil, I have learned, is illness, maybe all of it. And the bottom line is we're going to find out that this is a sick kid. Now, the ability to sit there for an hour and...
HANNITY: Well, wait a minute! Is evil spiritual...
ABLOW: ... then slaughter people...
HANNITY: Wait a minute! Is evil spiritual? Are you saying that evil is biochemical? I think that most spiritual counselors would argue it's the former.
ABLOW: You know, I think you can live through things that are so painful and so traumatic that they can have a neurochemical toll and they have a toll on your spirit. Maybe the two things have confluence. And this -- if we look at this kid's, this young man's life history, no doubt there are things about it that will curl the hair at the back of your neck.
And these aren't accidents. I've yet to find anyone do horrific things who didn't live through horrific things, and I don't think that's a coincidence.
HANNITY: Yes. Geraldo, there was the earlier comment -- I'm not 8going to dignify it by playing it, that -- this blame on the Fox News Channel. I've watched a lot of incendiary things being said on MSNBC, for example, by the Reverend Al Sharpton, at Freddy's at 125th Street, on the Morton Downey, Jr., show about what he -- you know, the different epithets he's used against gay people and racist comments that I think he's made about, you know, building buildings, et cetera.
Your thoughts about that attack.
RIVERA: You know, I lament when people like that state senator talking to Bill O'Reilly earlier made that really wrong-headed, dumbass remark about FOX News. You know, I really -- where does he get off saying that?
There is so much that is valid to report here. Number one, that the people are Charleston, South Carolina, have come together, black and white, to mourn this awful loss. They are standing united. There's no violence here. There is just utter sorrow and anger at the perpetrator.
And I have my own anger. I look at the person that you and Dr. Ablow have described as -- and you accurately report the fact that he had these run-ins with the law having to do with narcotics. It's clear that this kid, in his late, you know, 20th year on earth, was beginning to get into some very dangerous territory. They find the skinhead videos in his house, the other racist references. He's wearing the patches from South Africa and from white-dominated Rhodesia back in the day.
It's clear that the kid is going through, you know, whatever that disintegration he's going through. But then on his 21st birthday, if these reports are correct, and his father gives him a .45 -- you give a drug- addled troubled 20-year-old, about to be -- you give him a .45? I would submit that the father is guilty of the grossest irresponsibility!
But I also say, going back to whether or not this guy is crazy -- let me just use the layman's terms. I'm not a learned -- I'm not that learned in the psychoanalytical world. He is as crazy as all the other KKK members!
He's as crazy as Charles Manson was when he thought that he also, as this kid did, could launch a race war by committing an atrocity so vile that it divided the races, taking advantage of the racial divide in this country. I think Manson -- it's more about Manson than it is even than the four little girls who were killed in the Birmingham church bombing...
RIVERA: ... in 1963. It is an awful, awful event that happened here.
HANNITY: You mentioned...
RIVERA: And you know, I just -- I just -- my heart's broken.
HANNITY: My heart's broken, too. You mentioned the Facebook photo, the display of the flag of the apartheid era of South Africa or another flag of white rule in Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe, obviously.
Do we miss signs? We have a roommate now that has come out and spoken and said he was into segregation. He wanted to start a civil war. He said he was going to do something like this and kill himself.
Why, almost in every case after the fact, do we find out all the evidence was there, even posted on social media, and then we say, Oh, we -- you know, all these people say, Oh, we saw this was coming. How do we miss that, Geraldo?
RIVERA: Look at Adam Lanza. His mother had guns all over the house there in Newtown, Connecticut, all over. And the kid was clearly going off the deep end. She missed it, and he killed her as a result.
In this particular case, again, where was the dad? How can the father be so disconnected from the son that he -- the son arrested two times in the six months leading up to his 21st birthday, and still give him a .45?
And the fact that he had all of this racist paraphernalia in his room -- you know, parents, the kid's living with you, you've got a right to go in that room. You can't let this be a surprise to you. You can't unleash this sociopath, this heartless, hateful person to wreak this violence.
Nine -- nine people -- these were the best, Sean. These were the best, the pastor, the state senator, the people who have worked in this church 30 years, 40 years, people graduating college. These are people -- the nation weeps for what happened, what this -- what this punk did, and on this ground of all places. It's just something, Sean, that is utterly -- utterly shocking and outrageous.
HANNITY: All right, guys, we got to take a quick break here. We'll come back, and we'll have more live coverage on the ground from Charleston, South Carolina.
And then later tonight...
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: The fact that this took place in a black church obviously also raises questions about a dark part of our history.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Within moments, President Obama once again politicizing a tragedy. We'll have plenty of reaction to his comments as this live edition of "Hannity" continues. Please stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DEBBIE DILLS, RECOGNIZED ROOF'S CAR: I was on my way to work. And I'll just be honest, I was praying for those people and for those families (INAUDIBLE)
He just looked like a young boy. I believe it was the Lord. I believe God intervened to help me know that it was him. And I'm going to tell you I am no hero. I was scared. I was scared.
But I told Todd (ph). I said, I'll tell you what. If something happens here, if this man gets out and shoots me, you need to know I'm going to be in glory with my brothers and sisters in Christ that left here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: All right, the woman you just heard from is being hailed at a hero tonight. Debbie Dills reportedly saw South Carolina shooting suspect Dylann Roof, and helped to alert police, who then arrested him earlier today in North Carolina. Now, the 21-year-old alleged gunman is now in the Charleston County detention center. We're expect he'll be arraigned tomorrow.
Joining us now live on the ground from Charleston is "FOX & Friends First" co-host -- Ainsley Earhardt is with us. And with her is South Carolina state representative Peter M. McCoy, Jr.
Ainsley, I know you're from this area. I know this is a hard time for the community. Tell us the very latest.
AINSLEY EARHARDT, CO-HOST, "FOX & FRIENDS FIRST": Hard time for our country and definitely hard time for those of us who grew up here or live here because this is just not Charleston. It's a loving place. It's a wonderful community. This is a historic area.
And you've been here, Sean. You know how nice the people are here, and we all hate this, that it's happening here in this great city. And I'm here with a representative who represents this area. And I know that you were really good friends with Representative (sic) Pinckney. Tell me what your relationship was like because you didn't -- he was Democrat, you're a Republican.
STATE REP. PETER MCCOY, R-S.C.: And you made a fantastic point when we started this whole interview. This is a city that's built on hospitality and love. And the love that the people here have shown over the past 24 hours gives me complete confidence that love and hospitality will overcome -- will overcome the evil that happened over here 24 hours ago.
Senator Pinckney -- let me tell you about this man. There are hundreds of people that are behind me right now still at the church, waiting to take a picture, waiting to lay flowers.
He was a senator and a great man that was called to serve God at a young age, while he was still a teenager. He is the -- was the president of the student body at Allen University. He was a man who always thought before he spoke. He had a fantastic, big, booming voice. And when he spoke, people listened, a man of honesty and integrity. He is an icon. He will be sorely missed.
EARHARDT: His faith was very important to him, and you looked up to him. Any stories that come to mind?
MCCOY: Absolutely. And being one of the more conservative members in the South Carolina house, it's sometimes unusual to work with Democrats. But my very first bill dealt with concussions in student athletes and dealing with children. Senator Pinckney took a fantastic interest right away.
And once I passed it out of the house, I went to him right away, and he was the first senator to help me get that bill passed into law. He took an interest in children. He took an interest in their wellbeing. And he just -- he -- he took the lead from there.
EARHARDT: You know, Sean, he made an indelible impression on so many people here in Charleston. We were out by the church earlier tonight. I want to show you some of the video of the people that we met, an outpouring of a lot of tourists and a lot of people who live in the area that were there to lay flowers down in front of the church and light a candle. Take a look and -- take a listen to what this community's all about.
EARHARDT: When you actually come here to the church, what went through your mind and your heart?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My heart just sunk. I just didn't know what to say. My heart just -- oh, it's so sad right now.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I just wanted to come down and show support for the families, and there's not much that I can do or anybody can do.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think the lesson is that sometimes, we never know who is in the midst of us. We must be vigilant and cordial at all times.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Taking the lives of others in such extreme manners (INAUDIBLE) It's cowardice and it's weakness and it's shameful.
EARHARDT: What was your reaction when you heard the news?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't -- I just cried. I couldn't believe it.
EARHARDT: How do we get past this as a country?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't know. Prayer.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
EARHARDT: And what's your reaction when you hear that?
MCCOY: When I hear the reaction, the love and the outpouring of support that's come from not only across this state, but across this nation, it gives me hope that we will rise up again from what has happened here, become a stronger city, a stronger group of people and move past the situation.
EARHARDT: And let's change topics here because as a former prosecutor here in the Charleston area -- what happens next for the suspect? He was extradited here. He's in jail tonight here. What happens tomorrow?
MCCOY: Well, and I prosecuted thousands of cases right here in Charleston County. And so he's landed. He's now in detention over on Leeds (ph) Avenue, which is at the Alcannon (ph) Detention Center. There will be a magistrate bond hearing tomorrow. But jurisdictionally, they are not allowed to set a bond on a murder charge, so he will sit in jail until a circuit judge hears that bond.
EARHARDT: Death penalty? Can we expect that?
MCCOY: I tell you right now, we've got a fantastic solicitor in Scarlet Wilson (ph), and I think that the -- that Scarlet needs to sit down with the federal government and decide -- because I know the feds are investigating here, too -- which one of those areas can basically punish this guy the most?
And if -- there are aggravating circumstances that you go for in the death penalty. If I was prosecuting this case, I would absolutely go for the death penalty because if you go into a church where people are sharing faith, people are studying the bible, and you murder innocent folks and basically lay terror on the city, there's no -- there's -- that's an aggravating circumstance in my mind that would call for the death penalty.
EARHARDT: Now, Sean, I lived on Smith Street, which is just a few blocks over, when I was doing an internship at the NBC affiliate here after college, living with my sister on Smith Street. I'm originally from Columbia, which is two hours away, and that is where the suspect was from.
And my sources, my law enforcement sources in Columbia -- I've been talking to them all day -- they have said that they went in, they searched his father's house. They didn't see anything suspicious. So then they went to his mom's house. They did find skinhead paraphernalia and anti- African-American videos -- leads them to believe, obviously, this was -- that was evidence at the time of a hate crime. And they did, as you were speaking earlier, did talk to his roommate, who said that he'd been planning this for about six months.
Back to you, Sean.
HANNITY: All right. What a sad story. Ainsley, Thanks so much, and all our best to the community out there.
We go back to Fox News senior correspondent Geraldo Rivera on the ground tonight for us. You know, Geraldo, I look at the life of this pastor and this senator. He began preaching at the age of 13. He was a pastor at the age of 18, graduated from Allen University in '95, studied at Princeton, the University of South Carolina, Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary.
He became the youngest African-American elected to the legislature when he was just 23 years old in 1996, got in the state Senate in 2000. He was named as one of the African-American community's 30 leaders of the future by Ebony magazine in 1999. He is survived by a wife and two young daughters.
Such a -- such an incredible story. What a future he had in front of him. What a sad, tragic loss of a great human being by all accounts.
RIVERA: You know, I have to say something. What you just recited has made me more emotional than anything since I got here today from New York, to have that life wasted by this savage racist, selfish, narcissistic sociopath -- what a waste!
And for all of the resumes that you stated so eloquently, Sean, you have the situation. Two other things. One, you talk to the -- the Republicans on the other side of the aisle, this was the state senator who reached across and wanted to work together on the two sides, the two political sides, red and blue together.
And if you want another measure of the man, who is it that takes time out from their busy lives to run a prayer service, a learning section, a prayer, you know, where they teach the bible and the message and the meaning? I mean, does that? Who uses their free time so selflessly but the best among us? That's who died here. That's who was slaughtered here.
Again, I go back to this racist Judas. He was the Judas. He sat with them, he looked in their eyes, he pretended to pray with them and to be attentive and following and a faith-based person, and instead inside, rather than Christ, rather than God, rather than goodness, there was this malignant evil, knowing the whole time, as he counted down 45 minutes, 50 minutes-...
Now I'm taking out the .45 that my dad gave me for my birthday, now I'm shooting and now I'm shooting, and now I'm reloading and I'm shooting again, and then going to the one survivor and saying, I'm leaving you alive so you can tell them that we're killing these black people because they're raping and they want to take control -- Where does this sickness come from?
This is outrageous! This is savage! This is -- this is something -- you know, I believe, Sean, that the racial divide in this country is our biggest unresolved issue. It is our biggest domestic issue. It's more important than -- than the infrastructure and the climate that's changing and all these other issues that are significant and important, but not as urgent.
This is something that all of us -- taking an example from the people of Charleston -- pan, pan these people, these white people, black people, young people, old people coming here to this church, to the Mother Emanuel AME church, coming here to show their solidarity, that they stand together! This is the antidote to that hatefulness, Sean.
HANNITY: You know, Geraldo, I -- I share your passion. I -- you look at this man's background. And he's only one of the nine. And you think of the two children that will never see their father again, and nine families and extended families and a community and an entire city now mourn the loss of these people for what?
And the fact that we had all this evidence beforehand indicating that this guy was a racist, bigot, plotting and planning and scheming, and nobody said anything! They had no indication, but yet it was on...
RIVERA: Let me...
HANNITY: ... Facebook, yet his roommate knew he planned this! Nobody said anything. I don't get it!
RIVERA: I want you to now tell Sean how you feel about what happened here and how you feel about the fact that you're standing shoulder to shoulder with your fellow Charlestonians, regardless of race. You first.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, you know, I mean, I wanted to come and pay my respect and stand with people of all races and show that we should remember the victims and not the killer. You know, he wanted to create a civil war, and really, he just created a war against himself and brought us together.
RIVERA: And you, sir, how -- do you feel that there's a war against blacks? (INAUDIBLE) a racial war? What -- what -- what in your (INAUDIBLE) Is this just one psychopath, a disgusting person who should not be noted?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To be honest, I mean, I'm not sure at times. Sometimes I come and I think, you know, we're all together as one, and then other times I think, you know, we're not, for this act and other acts toward black people.
And so to be honest, you know, I don't know. I know I'm down here just showing my support, showing that, you know, I do care about, first off, black people because I am black, but also white people, as well, you know, everybody. But to answer that question, you know, I'm not really sure, but you know, I'm down here showing my support.
RIVERA: And I appreciate your presence and your sincerity.
And you, ma'am. Why are you here?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, we just came down. My husband is the pastor at our church, and we were actually -- where we live is only about 10 minutes from where he was picked up and arrested today. And we were actually already planning on coming down to Charleston for the weekend, and so just to be here at this time -- and we were just in church ourselves last night.
And to think that that could have happened anywhere, and unfortunately, it happened here, and with this group of people, like you said, it was just a senseless -- senseless travesty of -- you're at a loss for words. I mean, you really are because it's not about blacks. It's not about white. It's about people doing wrong to other people and...
RIVERA: And pastor in God's house.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's definitely humbling. I mean, that's somewhere we think that we're safe. I mean, that's somewhere you feel like you can come and just be yourself and...
RIVERA: I'm glad you're here.
Sean, back to you.
HANNITY: All right, Geraldo, it is amazing. You're right, if we can't go to our own churches and feel safe there it's scary. You know, in spite of evil and tragedy in this moment, you see a community like that coming together, people of all races, that is the real America. Not what this evil kid did and indicated what he wanted to do.
All right, coming up, you'll hear from the friends of one of the victims of the senseless tragedy. And then later tonight --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: How many people do we need to see cut down before we act?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Hillary Clinton not holding back in the immediate aftermath of this event. Now, she's trying to score political points, as is the president. We'll show what you he said and she said later tonight as HANNITY continues.
HANNITY: This is a Fox News alert. The community of Charleston, South Carolina, is in mourning tonight as is the rest of the country. People, they're remembering the nine victims who were tragically killed while attending a bible study last night. One of the victims was the pastor of the church, South Carolina State Senator Clementa Pinckney.
And joining us are three people who knew him very, very well, South Carolina state senators Larry Grooms and Ronnie Sabb, as also joining is Kyle Greene, and said the reverend was a mentor to him. Thank you all for being with us. Senator Grooms, let me start with you. I look at the resume of the pastor and his career as a senator -- 13 years old he became a pastor -- I'm sorry, he was preaching at 13, he was a pastor at the age of 18, well- studied in the doctrine of the church, youngest African-American legislator, just 23, State Senate not a few years later. Tell us about this incredible human being and this tragedy that leaves behind a wife and two children.
STATE SEN. LARRY GROOMS, R-S.C.: Well, he's someone I've come to know and love over the years. We've served in the general assembly for 18 years, the last 15 years being together in the South Carolina Senate. There's been issues that we've disagreed on. I'm a conservative Republican. He's a Democrat. But when we disagreed, it was behind closed doors.
But publicly, when we came together for the good of South Carolina, we let everybody know. We've done some remarkable things over these years. He was my colleague, he was my friend, he was my brother in Christ. He preached the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ. He was faithful to his God, his lord, he was faithful to the people of this state, he was faithful to his wife and family. He's the kind of role model that we need in our nation.
HANNITY: Senator Sabb, I look at the church, I know it's an historically black church with an incredible history, but yet there were people of all races that went to this church because of the great respect of the pastor, correct?
RONNIE SABB, SOUTH CAROLINA STATE SENATOR: I think that's absolutely correct. When you look at Senator Pinckney and what his life typified, it really reminds me of what Albert Einstein told us years ago when he said "Only a life lived for others is a life worth living." And I think because his attitude and his character was across the racial divide, folks followed him. Folks gravitated towards him. And that's the kind of intoxicating effect that his personality had on those who he came in contact with.
HANNITY: How refreshing that Larry Groom, a conservative Republican, and the pastor and the senator got along so well. Kyle, you say he was a mentor to you. How?
KYLE GREENE, MENTORED BY REVEREND CLEMENTA PINCKNEY: Yes. I graduated from Jasper County High School, and Clementa is also from Jasper County as well and we attended the same high school, not at the same time. He was a few years older than me. But one day he came back my 10th grade year, and he spoke about it doesn't matter that you're from a small town. What's important is you can dream a big dream and you can out into a world and do some unbelievable things.
And when I sat in the student section and I heard this man speak, I was like he's one of us. And it just reminded me that, you know, I want to one day go back and I want to speak the schools and I want to encourage kids to dream big and understand that their life has a purpose and they're not just here for a reason.
And he took me under his wing as like an understudy, and he would always give me bits of information, things to look forward to, things that I should try. And he was always there for me, like he didn't let him being a state representative or senator affect like our relationship. He never thought he was above me. I could text him, I could send him a message on Facebook and he would respond right back. And he was just always there for me.
And so now my Kyle Speaks company, I go all over the state speaking, it was all birthed out because of me hearing him speak, like he planted a seed in me and he allowed other people to water it. But it was all because I heard him speak that I wanted to do the same thing that he did. And I do exactly what he did. I'm a servant for the people. I serve the people just as he did, but he did it in a different way in which I did.
HANNITY: Senator Grooms, let me ask you, one of the things that angers me the most, and this happens in a lot of cases with radical Islamic terrorists, we find out later that they're very active on social media. In this particular case you have this Facebook photo of this young man displaying a flag of an apartheid era of South Africa. You see another flag of white-ruled Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe. Then you have a roommate who says he was a segregationist. He wanted to start a civil war. He said he was going to do something like this and kill himself. And he did it, but we're hearing it after the fact. Are we not paying enough attention to these people that are stating clearly and unequivocally what their intentions are before they do it? Why do we always find out after they do it that they've been telling people and saying it publicly?
GROOMS: There are a lot of strange people in this world. You see a lot of strange things. But what we saw today was the face of evil. Evil came into our community. Evil has taken the life of someone I care about. Evil has changed our community. And how we respond to this tragedy will define us for years to come. I want us to follow the example of Clementa Pinckney, preaching the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, talking as if in Micah, to what does the Lord require of thee but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with our God. If we come together as a people and follow the principles of Christianity so eloquently laid out by Senator Pinckney over these years, our community will prosper and we will be strong.
HANNITY: Senator Sabb, this young man sat there for an hour in a church as people were praying. He knew their good heart, he knew their good intentions. This isn't even a Sunday. It's a bible study on a Wednesday night. He sat there for an hour knowing what he was going to do.
But back to the issue. A lot of times when these incidents come up, they have telegraphed what they are going to do. This man telegraphed what he was going to do and we don't pick up on it. Do you think we need to pick up on it, Senator Sabb?
SABB: I do. I believe that we have to pay attention to what is being said. But not only can we sit silent and allow those persons to express their views to us, but we've got to take a stand. And to the extent that what they say is wrong, to the extent that what they say is racist, to the extent that what they say is evil, we've got to confront that with a right kind of spirit. I think to be silent is almost endorsing or giving consent. And so there ought to be an outrage when that kind of thing is expressed.
And so let me say one more quick thing on this notion of being in the church. I think when you look historically, persons who have wanted to do evil have come to that place believing that if we cut off leadership, if we destroy the people inside of the church, then we'll do something outside of the church. And I think what we have seen in this instance is we have seen a state and in fact I believe a nation that has come together, see that justice is being done. We've embraced those who have suffered in a major way, and we're going from there.
HANNITY: All right, our thoughts and prayers remain with the community. Thank you all for being with us. We appreciate it.
We have more reaction. We'll head back to South Carolina as we continue.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: Once against innocent people were killed in part because someone who wanted to commit harm had no trouble getting their hands on a gun.
At some point we as a country will have to reckon with the fact that this type of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries.
It is in our power to do something about it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: All right, just hours after this horrific massacre in Charleston, South Carolina, there's the president, he thought it was appropriate to politicize the tragedy.
Here with reaction, from the Reconcile Church Movement Bishop Harry Jackson Jr., Pastor and FOX News contributor Dr. Robert Jeffress, from the Fox News Medical A-Team, Dr. Keith Ablow says with us, and former NYPD detective Bo Dietl. This was within hours. Can't we have a moratorium on trying to politicize or politicizing and trying to somehow advance an agenda? Guns are not the issue here. If someone has evil in their heart, Bo, they're going to find a way to kill people. Why does the president and Hillary Clinton do this?
BO DIETL, FORMER NYPD DETECTIVE: I think it was very timing. We talk among your radio show with those other pastors this afternoon. I just felt like I knew these people. I don't know them. These were nine human beings that were gunned down by a deranged kid. I don't care what his motives were. This was a psychopath savage that killed these people in their act of praying to God. And to me it feels like they're people I knew.
My problem here again is what happened in Connecticut, what happened in Aurora. I believe this is a bipolar again is going to come out, showing it's bipolar. Once they start using these drugs, that bipolar nonsense starts kicking in.
HANNITY: We'll find out. When we come back, Bishop Harry Jackson Jr. will join us, Robert Jeffress and much more reaction from our panel as we continue tonight.
HANNITY: Welcome back to "Hannity." We continue to talk about this tragedy in South Carolina. Bishop Harry Jackson Jr., let me ask you. You see all this happening. You're going to hear a lot of psychoanalysis. All the evidence was there about this. How can somebody walk into a church, stay in the church -- isn't this pure evil?
BISHOP HARRY JACKSON JR., THERECONCILEDCHURCH.COM: It is pure evil. Right down the street at Ashley and Fishburne Street there's a hanging tree down there in this community that represents the racial divide that has been there forever. I think we've got a great moment where there needs to be an outpouring like there was in 9/11, where people come, black, white, brown, church members, and --
HANNITY: We see that tonight, right Richard? We see that tonight?
JACKSON: It's the starting of this thing. I think the next few days we need to continue. People need to know that we care. And I think there is an opportunity --
HANNITY: All right, Robert Jeffress? Pastor Jeffress?
DR. ROBERT JEFFRESS, PASTOR, FIRST BAPTIST CHRUCH, DALLAS: You know, Sean, I agree with Dr. Ablow a few minutes ago who said there is a reality of mental illness that is responsible for some of these acts of evil, but most evil in the world today, Sean, is the result of a willful rebellion against God and his laws which people have to be accountable for. And we cannot ignore the spiritual component of this. This is ultimately the war against good and evil. And although evil seems to have won last night in Charleston, it won't win forever. That has been the hope of Christians for 2,000 years, and this church for 200 years.
DIETL: This is a great time for America to start healing, because I remember back in the 60s, then all of a sudden in 2008 when our president was elected, the division started, we're dividing. This should be the first day for us all to get back together, get back on track the way we were in 1980s when everyone was together. This should be the catalyst, the call.
And all these race-baiters, stay the hell out of Charleston. Let us heal together. Black, white, it's all one. There were nine human beings that were killed in that church in the house of God. And this should be now the signal. Let's move forward. Let's heal our problems we have with our racism.
HANNITY: Guys, we have to take a break again. Thank you so much.
And unfortunately that is all the time we have left this evening. Our thoughts and prayers go out to people in Charleston and in South Carolina. Thank you for joining us. We'll see you back here tomorrow night.
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