CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — A judge has granted the federal government more time to respond to wrongful death lawsuits in the South Carolina church shootings that claimed the lives of nine black parishioners.
Fifteen lawsuits have been filed, alleging that the FBI negligently conducted a background check on 22-year-old Dylann Roof, which enabled him to buy the gun used in the June 2015 shootings at Charleston's Emanuel AME Church.
Justice Department attorneys asked on Monday that a Sept. 6 deadline be extended until Oct. 14. U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel granted the request on Tuesday.
The government says the South Carolina U.S. Attorney's Office is no longer handling the case, which is now assigned to the Justice Department's civil torts branch, whose attorneys need more time.