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On Thursday, a fellow inmate at South Carolina’s Charleston County Detention Center beat up Dylann Roof—the 22-year-old who murdered nine black parishioners in the racially motivated Charleston Church shooting of June 2015.
Soon after 26-year-old Dwayne Stafford punched Roof, people started filling Stafford’s commissary account through online donations.
The website Taking a Stand Against Discrimination (TASAD) posted Stafford’s mailing address and inmate number for those who want to send him mail. It also linked out to Stafford’s commissary account on JailPackStore.com, a website that allows the friends and families of inmates to make purchases for them and deposit funds into their prison accounts.
The Daily Dot called McDaniel Supply Company, which runs the JailPackStore donation site, but was told that they could not discuss individual inmate accounts and that any media inquiries would have to go through the prison facility itself.
On social media, though, dozens of posts showed that people were rushing to donate to Stafford’s account—to the point where the website was experiencing problems keeping up. According to multiple tweets, the JailPackStore site could only accept one donation for Stafford every 24 hours.
Dwayne Stafford can only receive one online deposit every 24 hours. Looks like I’m going to have to mail a money order
— Wetty Fap (@mahb20) August 5, 2016
Just heard about Dwayne Stafford. Definitely will be donating today
— JL (@JayFP13) August 5, 2016
Dwayne Stafford, Inmate Number 0001159035 Cell BM1232R ⁰Charleston County Detention Center ⁰3841 Leeds Ave, North Charleston, SC 29405
— llorón. (@TonyBananas_) August 5, 2016
Because of the lags on the donation site, some supporters tweeted Stafford’s inmate number and mailing address to encourage donations by mail. Others suggested that someone create a fundraising account on another platform such as GoFundMe.
Stafford is currently awaiting trial on prior charges (unrelated to punching Roof) of first-degree assault and armed robbery. At a press conference on Thursday that Yahoo quoted, Charleston County Sheriff Al Cannon said that Roof and his attorney declined to press additional charges against Stafford for the beating.
Mary Emily O'Hara is an LGBTQ reporter. Her work has appeared in Rolling Stone, NBC Out, Daily Dot, Broadly, Vice, the Daily Beast, the Advocate, Huffington Post, DNAinfo, Al Jazeera, and Portland's Pulitzer Prize-winning newsweekly Willamette Week, among other outlets.