Dylann Roof has at least one black friend who denies alleged shooter is racist.

Dylann Roof Has at Least One Black Friend Who Denies Alleged Shooter Is Racist

Dylann Roof Has at Least One Black Friend Who Denies Alleged Shooter Is Racist

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June 21 2015 6:33 PM

Dylann Roof Has at Least One Black Friend Who Denies Alleged Shooter Is Racist

scriven
"He never said anything racist to me," Christon Scriven, 21, told the BBC.

Screengrab from BBC video

At least one black man sees suspected shooter Dylann Roof as a friend and vehemently denies that the 21-year-old accused of killing nine people in a church was racist. “Everybody’s making him out to be racist but here I am in front of you today as a black man and telling you that I look at him no different today than what I looked him last week because he never said anything racist to me,” Christon Scriven, 21, told the BBC. “He never treated me any different” than he did his white friends, Scriven added. Scriven also talked to the Telegraph and said that “not once … did he say anything racist,” even though the two had “been drunk plenty of nights … so drunk that he’s passed out on the side of his car.”

Scriven also insists the “church wasn’t his primary target at all,” saying that Roof wanted to shoot people at the College of Charleston. Scriven says he didn’t know why Roof wanted to shoot the school, and when he asked him about it, “he just stopped talking … he never said anything else about it. He was like, ‘They all got seven days to live.’ ”

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Others don’t quite see things the way Scriven does. In an interview shortly after the shooting, Roof’s friend Joey Meek told the Associated Press that while he and Roof were drinking vodka one day, Roof complained that “blacks were taking over the world” and that “someone needed to do something about it for the white race.” CBS News also reported that a classmate said Roof often “told racist jokes.”

Daniel Politi has been contributing to Slate since 2004 and wrote the Today’s Papers column from 2006 to 2009. Follow him on Twitter.