Aurora theater shooting hearing, day two: Youngest victim's story, death of a military man

Update, 1:03 p.m. January 8: After the mid-morning break, FBI bomb technician Garrett Gumbinner returned to the stand to offer more details of James Holmes's apartment and its potentially lethal contents.

The agent said there appeared to have been three "initiating systems" designed to cause the various devices and substances inside the residence to explode -- fishing line connected to the door jamb, a remote control by a dumpster and a control used to launch model rockets. While speaking with Gumbinner, Holmes said he hadn't set the latter, but Gumbinner testified that lights on it were blinking.

Daniel King, James Holmes defense.JPG
Daniel King, a defense attorney for James Holmes.
Other items inside included ten two-liter Sprite bottles filled with gasoline and a series of six-inch fireworks shells with three-inch shells nested inside them. The three-inch shells contained smokeless powder of the sort used to make bullets, while the six-inch shells were partly filled with oil and gasoline.

Photos of the apartment displayed at the hearing depicted a very cluttered space thanks to a multitude of jars, bottles and shells, plus wires running from them over the beige carpet to the assorted triggering systems.

On cross-examination, Daniel King, one of Holmes's defense attorneys, asked Gumbinner if the remote-control car and boombox allegedly left near the apartment's dumpster were ever recovered. Gumbinner said that weren't found on July 20 and didn't know if they'd been picked up subsequently. However, he confirmed that the authorities were able to disarm all of the devices without causing fire or an explosion.

The next witness, Steven Beggs, is a supervising special agent of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. He testified about the timeline of purchases Holmes allegedly made in preparation for the theater attack and the rigging of his apartment. He started buying items on May 10, 2012, obtaining two six-ounce Clear Out teargas grenades via the Internet, and concluded his purchases on July 14. During that time, he bought items online and at area businesses, including Gander Mountain and Bass Pro Shop. Among them were four guns -- two handguns, a shotgun and a rifle -- plus 6,295 rounds of ammunition, the tactical gear he was wearing upon his arrest, two pairs of handcuffs, hearing protection, gun sights and a 100-round drum magazine for the rifle, an AR-15, and an array of chemicals.

Continue for more of our latest update on the preliminary hearing's second day.

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Cognitive_Dissident topcommenter

Thank you for no longer plastering the perpetrator's face all over every article. The Aurora theater photo is much less offensive (well, really, not at all.)

Sara Harkness
Sara Harkness

" law enforcement had put paper bags on Holmes's hands to preserve gunshot residue, and an officer watching him in the room said he began moving the bags in talking-puppet motions. After being given some water, he also played with the Styrofoam cup, as well as pulling a staple from a table and trying to stick it into an electrical outlet. Despite these actions, Holmes was not tested for drugs or alcohol. When King asked why not, Appel replied, "I saw no indication that he was under the influence of anything."" That's weird that they didn't bother testing him for drugs/alcohol. It seems like an important piece if information.

J Patrick McDuff
J Patrick McDuff

That clown is trying to use the "insanity" angle to get off. Also, his picture with the BIG eyeballs is another attempt to prove insanity. Fry his ass!!!

Peace Will Win
Peace Will Win

Compassion. He is a human being. A son. and a patsy.

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