July 23rd, 2012
12:11 PM ET

Death penalty decision months away, DA says

Editor's note: The man accused of opening fire in a crowded movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, is set to make his first court appearance Monday, giving the public its first look at the suspect since his arrest in an attack that authorities say was planned months in advance. We're live blogging the court appearance, which begins at 11:30 a.m. ET.

[Posted at 12:11 p.m. ET] The district attorney's press conference has concluded.

[Posted at 12:11 p.m. ET] Carol Chambers, Arapahoe County district attorney, on Monday urged anybody who still has information that may be pertinent in the case to contact the police or the district attorney's office.

[Posted at 12:09 p.m. ET] Asked by a reporter if any medication or sedatives had been provided by the jail to Holmes, Chambers said she had no information about it.

[Posted at 12:07 p.m. ET] "It's still a very active and ongoing investigation," Carol Chambers, Arapahoe County district attorney, said Monday.

[Posted at 12:06 p.m. ET] Domestic terrorism charges would not be something state prosecutors would consider in the case, Carol Chambers, Arapahoe County district attorney, said Monday.

[Posted at 12:04 p.m. ET] Victims' families will be consulted before a decision is made on seeking the death penalty for Holmes, Carol Chambers, Arapahoe County district attorney, said. That decision is months away, she said.

[Posted at 12:02 p.m. ET] Carol Chambers, Arapahoe County district attorney, said "there is no such thing as a slam dunk case" and prosecutors would be working hard to prove the charges against James Holmes.

[Posted at 11:45 a.m. ET] Holmes' hair was dyed a bright orange during his court appearance Monday.

[Posted at 11:41 a.m. ET] Holmes' expression has changed little during the court hearing. He has mostly been staring off into space.

[Posted at 11:34 a.m. ET] Formal filing of charges will be Monday, July 30, at 9:30 Colorado time, the judge says.

[Posted at 11:32 a.m. ET] Holmes didn't look at the judge as the hearing started, just down as he was read his rights.

[Posted at 11:31 a.m. ET] James Holmes appears before Judge William B. Sylvester. He is wearing a maroon jumpsuit.

[Posted at 11:27 a.m. ET]  The public information officer for Colorado courts tweets that the district attorney in the James Holmes case will hold a press conference after the hearing.

[Posted at 11:09 a.m. ET]  James E. Holmes, 24, is likely to face charges of first-degree murder - an offense that carries a possible death penalty, if he is convicted - in the shooting deaths, given allegations over the weekend by police that there is evidence to suggest "calculation and deliberation" in the rampage.

Holmes is being held in connection with the early Friday morning shootings that left 12 dead and 58 wounded, and the subsequent discovery of his booby-trapped apartment, which authorities believe he rigged before leaving for the Century Aurora 16 multiplex.

Authorities have been tight-lipped about a possible motive in the case, and police spokesman Frank Fania told CNN late Sunday that Holmes has been uncooperative with investigators and requested an attorney.

Arapahoe County public defender James O'Connor has been assigned to the case. The Colorado Judicial Department declined to say whether Holmes requested a public defender. A telephone call by CNN to O'Connor's office was not immediately returned.

Holmes' court appearance will come a few hours before his family is expected to break their silence with a statement.

The family, which lives in San Diego, has not spoken publicly since the allegations against Holmes. They issued a short statement Friday saying they did not wish to be disturbed "at the time of this tragic event."

Background of Colorado shooting suspect full of contrasts

Remembering the victims

soundoff (1,254 Responses)
  1. mccjanna

    I CANNOT believe that CNN cannot get this audio/video worked out. Ridiculous!
    Remind me to watch FOX next time!

    July 23, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • humanrightsut

      ALL feeds were the same, fox would have been just as bad... LISTEN, children.

      July 23, 2012 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
    • Jack

      The audio/video is the same on all outlsets. It is sent by cell signal and can't be helped today.

      July 23, 2012 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  2. truefax

    his problem is simple not enough
    P
    u
    s
    s
    y
    A man can only go for so long and 24 years is one heck of a long time, you'd snap to I bet.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Aaron Burns

      Lol. Yup, it's America's women's fault for being so god damned tight with that. Save a life, lay a nerd or ugly dude once in awhile!

      July 23, 2012 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
    • true

      truefax has it right.

      July 23, 2012 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
    • Marcus

      True. That, W E E D, and alcohol seems to satistfy us all indeed.

      July 23, 2012 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  3. Merv

    Vengeance is mine, sayeth the Lord.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Roboy

      Merv , he also said that those who live by the sword die by the sword.

      July 23, 2012 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  4. CP

    Hey Doctor, did you ever think about the possibility that people on anti-depressants are more prone to paranoid schizophrenia and its not a side effect at all? Hmm

    July 23, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Kelly

      I would like to see the research that backs up this comment. Mental health has bad enough stigma without accusations that medications used in treatment causes this behavior...

      July 23, 2012 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |
    • FDF

      what r u talking about? No mercy for this stupid jerk but depression has nothing to do with paranoid schizophrenia...ignorance...

      July 23, 2012 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |
  5. Mick J.

    Stop calling him a suspect. He is the killer. He was caught red handed behind the building with loaded guns, mask and body armor. His apartment was rigged with bombs. What is the point calling him a suspect. Give him swift justice. Give him life without parole and make him serve in general population. Let the system decide his fate!

    July 23, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
  6. Lacey

    After all that has transpired, the least he could do is to make eye contact with those speaking.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
  7. Peter

    We should love this man. 'Love your enemies and pray for them.' Even the pagans love those who are kind to them. God still loves him and so should we. 'Where there is hatred, let me sew love.' St. Francis 'Forgive them, Father, for they know not what they do.' – Jesus dying on the cross.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Jack13

      are you kidding me with your jesus and god, where were they last friday night when that blood sucker open fire, take your religion and you stick it

      July 23, 2012 at 11:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Sean

      YES, I love him, I'd love to string him up by his nads, and then let the effected families have their way with him, Nuff said!

      July 23, 2012 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
    • VikingSkog

      justice shall also be done and he will die.

      July 23, 2012 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
    • Pedro

      This guy knew what he was doing he is just a sociopath.When will the democrats finally come to their senses and allow medical records to be merged with background checks?

      July 23, 2012 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
    • Warren

      Father don't forgive him, he knew exactly what he was doing. Send him straight to Pergatory now.

      July 23, 2012 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • gf

      While I don't disagree, this seems a bit "preachy". Governments have their authority to carry out justice. This case deserves the justice of our government/courts.

      And by "preachy", I mean it would be like telling someone who's going through a bad time that, "You think you have it bad, imagine what Job went through."

      And by agree, I do agree that as people, we should treat people with respect. Be someone a believer in Jesus or not. For Americans, we should set examples by the justice and treatment we afford. And while yes, he did it, under our law he's still officially not guilty 'yet' – a technicality of course. But there's always the insanity option defense will likely push for.

      July 23, 2012 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
  8. dave

    Boy his expression really has u guys going....he's not whacked out, he's playing the tune to the public as if he really was, he's a highly intelligent man, according to sources, he planned this horrible crime for months, of he will plead insanity, case gets dragged out, etc. Just fry him! End it! And id like to see on live tv so the world can see.....

    July 23, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Patty Ising

      Totally agree!

      July 23, 2012 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
  9. Penny Nickels

    Lock Holmes up in a cell with Manson and the Unabomber guy. They should have lots of stories they could share together.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  10. TooFar

    Why are we wasting tax payer dollars with the court showroom garbage. Just stand up the guy adjacent to a cement wall and have the firing squad have at it.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  11. andyoo

    "Has anyone considered that this guy was raised in a culture (this is also the culture of the other commenters on this site) of extreme physical and psychological media violence? Whatever his motive for this terrible event all he has to do is watch a "modern" action movie for ideas"

    No.....typical american ...blame everyone you daddy mommy but yourself.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  12. Brian Myers

    I hope the State pursues the death penalty.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  13. Mason

    If everyone had guns and body armor and was pumped up on meth like the mass killer, then the mass killing would be prevented. They would have to go to extreme measures to make it happen. He would have to use grenades, so that everyone will have to have grenades. So he would also have to have a launcher on his AR and a rocket launcher to boot. He would have to use armor piercing depleted uranium rounds to get through all of the civilian armor. If he knew those liberal laws were in place, he would have to use a land mover giant truck to crash through the walls of the theater to get to people, because everyone will be armed to the teeth. SO we may change the laws again when that starts happening, so that everyone will have a land mover and a grenade launcher on our AKs and ARs.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
    • JC

      Dude. Decaf.

      July 23, 2012 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
    • nolongerarepublican

      Like the REAL crime experts are saying – let's find the cause of the MENTAL ILLNESS that causes people to do these things.
      I say it is violent video games kids start playing almost right after they are born.

      July 23, 2012 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
    • greg

      Can you please go to the next police or sheriff's station and ask them to lock you up for life? Clearly you are deranged. please tell me where you live so that I would stay away from your city.

      July 23, 2012 at 11:58 am | Report abuse |
    • A Citizen

      Why does this not make any sense ?

      July 23, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Chris

    Why did they dye his hair orange during the hearing? . . . Save the money for his execution.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
    • i12bphil

      Can you people not read? His hair was already orange when he was arrested!

      July 23, 2012 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
  15. Kim

    Holmes' hair was dyed a bright orange during his court appearance Monday.

    They dyed his hair during court?!? Proofread much CNN?

    July 23, 2012 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
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