Federal trial again delayed in Charleston church shooting

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A judge has again delayed the trial of a white man charged in the shooting deaths of nine black parishioners at a Charleston church as attorneys wait to see whether the federal government will seek the death penalty.

Dylann Roof faces dozens of federal charges, including hate crimes, in the slayings at Emanuel AME Church last June.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jay Richardson told U.S. District Richard Gergel on Thursday that he expects the Justice Department will decide on whether to seek the death penalty in March or April.

Defense attorney David Bruck said his client is prepared to plead guilty if the government does not seek death.

Roof also faces nine murder charges in state court and prosecutors are seeking the death penalty in that case.