A loophole in the national background check system reportedly allowed accused South Carolina church shooter Dylann Roof to obtain a gun.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation said the system did not have access to a police report where Roof admitted drug possession, reports The New York Times. A person charged with a felony is prohibited under federal law from obtaining a firearm.
“We are all sick this happened,” FBI Director James B. Comey told the Times. “We wish we could turn back time.”
The 21-year-old Roof has been charged with murder and attempted murder, among others, for the June 9 shooting that left nine dead inside of a historically African-American church in Charleston, South Carolina.
Federal authorities have not said whether they will pursue hate crime charges against Roof, although Justice Department officials have said they broadly agree the shootings meet the legal requirements for a hate crime.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.