Aurora theater shooting: Four days set to discuss second mental evaluation of James Holmes

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James Holmes in court in June.
Accused Aurora theater shooter James Holmes looked unkempt at a court hearing this morning to discuss setting another hearing that, if the public is allowed to attend, could shed some light on his mental health.

Holmes sported bushy hair and a beard and sat stoically as he listened to Judge Carlos Samour set aside four days -- January 27, 28, 29 and 30, 2014 -- for a hearing on prosecutors' request that Holmes undergo a second mental evaluation. The lawyers say they expect four experts to testify at the hearing.

Holmes is accused of killing twelve people and injuring seventy more by opening fire at a midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises in Aurora on July 20, 2012. In a court filing in July of this year, Holmes's defense attorneys admitted he was the gunman but said he was "in the throes of a psychotic episode when he committed the acts that resulted in the tragic loss of life and injuries sustained by moviegoers."

In June, Holmes pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity. He subsequently underwent a sanity evaluation at the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo to determine three things: whether he is competent to stand trial, his sanity on the date of the offense and how any mental disease he may suffer affects any mitigating factor in the death penalty law.

On November 15, prosecutors filed two motions requesting further examination "pursuant to C.R.S. 16-8-106(1)." Colorado Revised Statute 16-8-106(1) is the section of state law that details how a mental evaluation of a defendant who has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity should be carried out. Aside from the titles, the motions were sealed.

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The remodeled Century 16 theater in Aurora, where the shooting took place.
But in court last month, prosecutors explained that they'd like Holmes to be evaluated a second time "by a different clinician" regarding one of the three conclusions reached by the first mental evaluation -- a move that has caused Holmes's previously scheduled February trial to be postponed. They did not say what the conclusion was.

The defense objected. In prosecutors' reply to the defense's objection, they raised what Judge Samour cryptically calls "a new request and new arguments." In an order (on view below), Samour says that new request is "untimely and improper." But, he says, given the importance of the issue, he'll allow the prosecution to make it.

In court today, Samour set deadlines for the defense to respond to the prosecution's new request and for prosecutors to reply to the defense's response. Holmes's attorneys have until January 10 to respond and prosecutors have until January 17 to reply.

The hearing on the prosecution's request will begin on January 27 and is expected to last three to four days. Samour quickly ticked off the last names of the four expert witnesses who are expected to testify, referring to some of them as doctors. Holmes's attorneys have requested that the hearing be closed to the public "due to the nature of the subject matter being discussed and the irreparable harm that the dissemination of this information would cause to Mr. Holmes's right to a fair trial by an impartial jury." The prosecution disagrees and wants the hearing to remain open. Samour indicated today that he'll decide this week.

He also vacated a hearing set for January 3, at which New York-based Fox News reporter Jana Winter was scheduled to testify. Winter was subpoenaed by Holmes's attorneys after she wrote a story quoting unnamed law-enforcement sources as saying that a notebook Holmes mailed to a psychiatrist contained "details about how he was going to kill people." Holmes's attorneys want to know the identity of Winter's sources.

But last week, the New York Court of Appeals ruled that Winter did not have to testify because she is protected by that state's shield law. Holmes's defense attorneys said today that they're considering whether to appeal the ruling.

Continue to read Samour's order and the New York Court of Appeals ruling.


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22 comments
uberness
uberness

tj1182, YOU need to open your eyes and realize how stupid you sound. There is so much evidence against Holmes and the defense EVEN ADMITTED he did it! Shit, he had plans, his house was booby trapped, he had weapons, and the list goes on... And why would our government be behind reporting bad stories that happen in our country?? That is just fucking dumb. You are probably one of those dumbasses that think 911 didn't happen. Maybe you should join Holmes if you don't think this happened or he did it. Or better yet, just end your life and make this world a better place.

tj1182
tj1182

Wow! All these negative comments based on what? CNN, FoxNews, etc...How you know he did it? Did any of you's see him at the theater? Surveillance video? Positive identification? NO, the public hasn't seen anything! You all are brainwashed by the media pegging this genius as a monster. Our Government is behind this, open your EYES! I'm sure all of you's think Sandy Hook actually happened. YOU are what's wrong with this country.

Mary Maybee
Mary Maybee

How many does this crazy person get? Did those poor people enjoying a movie get all these chances? This should be a slam dunk case. Ok if he is crazy, then put him in Pueblo and let's be done with this, never to hear about him again!

Josh Moore
Josh Moore

All they should be deciding is if the bullet goes in his head or his heart.

Rosa Alex
Rosa Alex

This is why the judicial system is fucked. This dude continues to screw everyone over. Waste time in courts then sent to private prison system where our tax dollars will support him... Put a bullet in his head or hang him publicly and be done with the bull shit dudes guilty what more is there to the story?

Buzz Cranfill
Buzz Cranfill

The 18th judicial district is a bunch of pussies, the judges are afraid to make a controversial decision. They will give the defense anything they want. The sheriff has Holmes protected in the medical unit all by himself on a constant watch.

Yuke Toofte
Yuke Toofte

wtf...this is a bunch of crap...mentally ill or not...you shoot a bunch of innocent people...you go to jail if not put down by lethal injection...

Kent Reichert
Kent Reichert

our taxes paying dollars is going towards this shit, therefore i think the public should vote what to do ,i'm i'm voting with CINDY, bullet to the head, keep cost down bullets are cheap!

Diane Stinson
Diane Stinson

WTF?! It better be because they finally realize he's been faking! And QUIT using his name

Cindy Zavala
Cindy Zavala

What he really deserves is a bullet to the head. End of story.

Brendan Flynn
Brendan Flynn

he deserves to be in prison for life..fuck this evaluation bullshit.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Another one of the NRA's touted "Law Abiding Gun Owners" ...


... right up to the moment he pulled the trigger.



DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Rosa Alex  ... Jesus would be proud of your compassion.

tj1182
tj1182

Yeah, cause they don't want him talking to anybody. That's if he can even talk for himself after all those drugs they pumped into him. Have you seen him in court last year? Do you honestly think he wasn't drugged up and had no idea where he was or what was going on?

tj1182
tj1182

And you're basing this on what evidence?

tj1182
tj1182

Please, use one of those cheap bullets on yourself for believing that this young man was behind this.

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay   Wrong again donkey boy.  Another committed liberal.  

Liberals own guns  too dickwad and they are the ones using them for nefarious purposes.  

Donk = another dumb-ass liberal who can't handle the truth so he makes up bullshit to deflect it.  

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