CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - Federal prosecutors have filed a motion requesting the trial of 21-year-old Joey Meek, Dylann Roof's friend, be moved from Columbia to Charleston.
Meek is accused of not telling investigators everything he knew about Roof's plans in connection to the fatal shooting of nine parishioners at the AME Emanuel Church.
Meek's attorneys had filed a letter with the court on Nov. 16 opposing the transfer of the trial's venue to Charleston.
Prosecutors stated in the motion, which was filed on Thursday, that the trial's move is based upon the convenience of the victims and witnesses who are located in and around Charleston.
"Among the factors to be considered, the most significant weight should be placed on the rights and convenience of the victims," the motion stated."As this Court is aware, there are a multitude of victims in Charleston area, who have shown a desire to attend all Court hearings. Despite the challenges of travel, many of those victims have travelled to Columbia for hearings in the matter. Moreover, given their interest in this prosecution and the likely non-applicability of any sequestration order, it is likely that many of the victims would attend the trial in its entirety."
In addition, the motion stated that there are a number of witnesses that will be called in the trial who live in the Charleston area, though some witnesses are located in the Columbia area.
Prosecutors said the witnesses who reside in Columbia will only be required to attend a portion of the trial.
The motion also stated that while Meek lives in Columbia, the "individual convenience of the defendant himself does not outweigh that of the multitude of victims to the Mother Emanuel AME Church shooting."
Meek's attorney said on Monday that her client worried he may not get a fair trial and his family would not be able to attend the trial if it was moved to Charleston.