RICHMOND, V.A. (AP) – Survivors and relatives of nine people killed in a racist attack at a South Carolina church have asked a federal appeals court to reinstate their lawsuit over a faulty background check that allowed Dylann Roof to buy the gun he used in the 2015 shooting.
A judge dismissed the lawsuit last year.
The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments Tuesday.
The families’ lawyer argued that a National Instant Criminal Background Check System examiner was required to do additional research after learning Roof had been arrested. But a government lawyer said the system’s standard operating procedures aren’t mandatory.
The FBI has acknowledged that a drug charge should have prevented Roof from buying the gun. Roof was sentenced to death in the massacre at Charleston’s Emanuel AME Church.