News Wrap: Dylann Roof insists he’s not mentally ill at sentencing

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Christmas decorations and a small tree frame the Mother Emanuel AME Church after the federal trial of Dylann Roof who was found guilty of 33 counts including hate crimes in Charleston, South Carolina December 15, 2016. REUTERS/Randall Hill - RTX2V9DY

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ALISON STEWART: In the day’s other news: The white supremacist who killed nine black church worshipers in Charleston, South Carolina, insisted he is not mentally ill. Dylann Roof is acting as his own lawyer for the death penalty phase of his federal hate crimes trial.

In his opening statement, he said — quote — “There is nothing wrong with me psychologically.” He didn’t address his crimes, and didn’t ask to be spared execution. The prosecution argued that Roof’s actions justify capital punishment.

JUDY WOODRUFF: In Turkey, authorities say they have identified the gunman in a New Year’s Eve nightclub attack that killed 39 people. But they didn’t release the name today, and the killer remained at large. Turkish police detained 20 suspects linked to the assault, all said to be Islamic State militants, including 11 women.

And President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addressed the nation, insisting he won’t surrender to terrorists.

PRESIDENT RECEP TAYYIP ERDOGAN, Turkey (through translator): Nobody’s lifestyle is under systematic threat in Turkey. We will never allow this. We haven’t allowed this since we took the helm 14 years ago. Anyone who claims otherwise must prove it with concrete examples.

JUDY WOODRUFF: The Islamic State group has said the nightclub attack was retaliation for Turkish military operations in Northern Syria.

ALISON STEWART: A military court in Israel has convicted a soldier of manslaughter for killing a Palestinian who had stabbed another soldier. Sergeant Elor Azaria shot the attacker, who was wounded, disarmed and laying on the ground. Supporters of Azaria clashed with police outside the courtroom today, and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called for Israel’s president to grant a pardon.

JUDY WOODRUFF: Back in this country, president-elect Trump announced he has chosen Wall Street lawyer Jay Clayton to chair the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Clayton is noted for his expertise in public and private mergers and public offerings.

ALISON STEWART: Macy’s announced today its cutting more than 10,000 jobs and going ahead with plans to close 68 stores.

And on Wall Street, retailers helped lead the way higher. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 60 points to close at 19942. The Nasdaq rose almost 48 points, and the S&P 500 added nearly 13.

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