Authorities have arrested 21-year-old Dylann Roof of Lexington, South Carolina, suspected of opening fire during a prayer service and killing nine.
“It’s very, very sad that these instances happen in that we have individuals out there who do these types of things,” Fischer tells reporters during her weekly conference call. “So, my prayers are with the families that have been affected by it and also the community of Charleston.”
Authorities say Roof, who is white, joined the Wednesday evening prayer service at Emanuel AME Church for about an hour before shooting and killing six women and three men. One of the victims was the pastor, state Sen. Clementa Pinckney.
Charleston police say eight people were found dead inside the church. Two others were rushed to the hospital, where one died.
The U.S. Department of Justice has launched a hate crime investigation.
Fischer says she’s sure legislation will be pushed in Congress in wake of the tragedy.
“I’ve always supported looking at how we can better as a society identify those individuals, get them the help that they need so that they will not be a danger to others.”
Emanuel AME is an historic black church which featured speakers such as Booker T. Washington in its past. It played a role in the Civil Rights movement. Martin Luther King Junior spoke there in 1962.