David Goldman, Associated Press
Charleston Emergency Management Director Mark Wilbert holds a flier distributed to media, Thursday, June 18, 2015, with surveillance footage of a suspect wanted in the connection of a shooting Wednesday at Emanuel AME Church during a news conference, in Charleston, S.C.

CHARLESTON, S.C. — Dylann Storm Roof drove around with a Confederate flag on his license plate — not exactly an unusual sight in the South. But on his Facebook page, he wore a jacket with the flags of the former white-racist regimes of South Africa and Rhodesia.

A picture is emerging of the 21-year-old white man arrested in the shooting deaths of nine people during a prayer meeting at a historic black church in Charleston. The Wednesday night attack was decried by stunned community leaders and politicians as a hate crime.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, a civil rights group that tracks hate organizations and extremists, says it was not aware of Roof before the rampage. And some friends say they did not know him to be racist.

One high school buddy says Roof had black friends.