James Holmes: Will Aurora shooter face death penalty?

Accused Aurora movie theater shooting suspect James Holmes
Accused Aurora movie theater shooting suspect James Holmes

against the former graduate student for the “Dark Knight” shooting rampage that killed 12 moviegoers.

It is widely expected that Arapahoe County District Attorney George Brauchler will attempt to win a death sentence against the 25-year-old California native.

Brauchler already has announced he has a death penalty lawyer on the prosecution team and he rejected a defense offer to let Holmes plead guilty and serve a life sentence if capital punishment is taken off the table.

Holmes is accused of opening fire inside a suburban Denver theater during a screening of the Batman movie “The Dark Knight Rises” last July, in one of the deadliest outbursts of gun violence in the United States in recent years.

Holmes is charged with multiple counts of murder and attempted murder for the shooting massacre that also wounded 58 moviegoers. Another dozen people suffered non-gunshot injuries as they fled the Aurora, Colorado, cinema.

Arapahoe County District Judge William Sylvester entered a not guilty plea for Holmes last month, but said he would consider allowing that to be changed to not guilty by reason of insanity.

Last week, public defenders said in a court filing that Holmes was willing to plead guilty and serve a life sentence without the possibility of parole if prosecutors would not try to execute their client.

While Holmes’ attorneys said they are prepared to mount an insanity defense, they wrote in the filing that “Mr. Holmes is currently willing to resolve the case to bring the proceedings to a speedy and definite conclusion for all involved.”

Brauchler fired back in a written response, calling the move by the defense improper at this stage of the case and “that it was filed for the intended purpose of generating the predictable pretrial publicity.”

“The only conclusion that an objective reader would reach … is that the defendant knows that he is guilty, the defense attorneys know he is guilty and that both of them know that he was not criminally insane,” Brauchler wrote.

In court pleadings, public defenders Daniel King and Tamara Brady have said Holmes has been hospitalized twice since his arrest, once for “potential self-inflicted injuries.”

At one point, jailers determined Holmes was a danger to himself and in “immediate need of a psychiatric evaluation.” He was transported by ambulance to a Denver psychiatric ward “where he was held for several days, frequently in restraints,” his lawyers wrote.

Also at issue at Monday’s hearing is whether a Fox News reporter will be compelled to testify about confidential sources she used in a story that said a notebook Holmes sent to a psychiatrist detailed his plans to commit mass murder.

Sylvester agreed to hear arguments from lawyers for New York-based reporter Jana Winter, whose story violated a gag order he had imposed in the case.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Woman dies when run over by bus at…

A woman at the Burning Man arts and culture festival in the Nevada desert died on Thursday when she was run over by a bus carrying participants.

National

Texas parents sue day care center for duct…

By Marice RichterDALLAS (Reuters) - A Texas couple has filed a lawsuit against the owners of a Fort Worth-area day care center seeking $1 million…

National

Santa Fe city council votes to decriminalize marijuana

By Joseph KolbALBUQUERQUE N.M. (Reuters) - Santa Fe on Wednesday became the latest U.S. city to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana, with lawmakers in the…

International

Egypt queries Mursi over documents "leaked" to Al…

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt is investigating jailed ex-president Mohamed Mursi in connection with documents that judicial investigators say were leaked to the Qatar-based Al Jazeera…

Going Out

'Friends' coffeehouse Central Perk coming to NYC —…

"Friends" is coming back for a one-off special: "The One with the Free Coffee." Warner Bros. is bringing a pop-up replica of Central Perk, the…

Movies

Interview: 'As Above, So Below' directors: 5 ways…

The fraternal directors of the found footage horror "As Above, So Below" dish on the best ways to frighten the bejesus out of audiences.

Movies

Criterion's new Jacques Demy box mixes the light…

Jacques Demy, the most effervescent of French New Wave filmmakers, gets a Criterion box all to himself, with classics like "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg."

Entertainment

Comedian Joan Rivers, 81, rushed to New York…

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Acerbic comedian and fashion critic Joan Rivers was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital in New York on Thursday after she reportedly…

NFL

3 things we learned in the Giants preseason…

The final score didn’t matter — a 16-13 win by the Giants — but it would’ve been nice to finally see Big Blue’s new-look offense get on track.

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, 49ers start…

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots start at top

U.S. Soccer

5 facts about new England captain Wayne Rooney

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney was named as the new England captain by coach Roy Hodgson on Thursday.

NFL

Jets vs. Eagles: 3 things to watch

A win on Thursday night at the Eagles would give the Jets a 3-1 record and just their second winning preseason under head coach Rex Ryan.

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.

Food

Recipe: Samuel Adams beer-marinated grilled shrimp

Summer calls for two things: a cold beer and light food. Sam Adams' Latitude 48 IPA fairly bursts with citrus notes, making it an ideal marinade…

Wellbeing

4 healthy ingredient swaps to make your meals…

When it comes to eating well, everyone knows they could be doing better. But cooking in an apartment on a busy schedule is a recipe…

Wellbeing

Heart trumps brain when it comes to movies…

When you need a good cry, do you reach for the movie that’s “based on a true story”? Science says you’re giving your brain far…