Monday, July 23, 2012

Holmes, aka, "The Joker" Held Without Bail For 12 Aurora Murders

James Eagan Holmes

Photo: Courtesy of the Arapahoe County Sheriff's Department

Holmes appeared in a Arapahoe County court for a probable cause hearing to continue to hold the suspect without bond.

By H. Nelson Goodson
July 23, 2012

Centennial, Colorado - On Monday, James Eagan Holmes, 24, aka, "The Joker" of Aurora made his first court appearance to determine, if there was enough probable cause to continue to hold the suspect in connection with 12 homicides on Friday. The court hearing was televised nationally.
Holmes is accused of randomly killing 12 victims and injuring 58 others at an Aurora, Colorado movie theater showing a premiere of a Batman movie "The Dark Knight Rises." Judge William Sylvester determined there was enough evidence to hold Holmes without bail and extended the dateline for Arapahoe County prosecutors to file charges against the suspect. Holmes did not enter a plead during the hearing.
Arapahoe County prosecutors are expected to formally file 12 felony counts of first-degree homicide and multiple counts of attempted homicide, including other related charges by next Monday, which would make Holmes eligible for the death penalty. It would take months to decide, if Holmes will face the death penalty. The family of the deceased victims will be consulted in the process of determining, if prosecutors will seek the death penalty for Holmes, according to Arapahoe County District Attorney Carol Chambers, who is prosecuting the case. State prosecutors have 60 days to decide, if they will seek the death penalty.
Holmes is being held in isolation and on a suicide watch at the Arapahoe Detention Center. Authorities say, Holmes is refusing to cooperate in the case.
Last Friday, Holmes was taken into custody by Aurora police in connection with the multiple deadly shooting at the Century 16 movie theater in an Aurora mall. On early Friday, Holmes apparently shortly after midnight left theater 9 through an exit. After 20 minutes into the Batman movie, Holmes returned in full body armor with several weapons. The carnage began when Holmes threw several tear gas canisters into the seating audience. Some people at first thought it was part of the movie screening or a stunt play. But they soon panicked after Holmes fired live rounds into the ceiling several times. When the audience reacted and stood up to flee, Holmes shot at them while he stood in front of the theater screen.
Holmes began to move up the aisles while shooting at anyone that stood up or tried to run from theater 9. One of the shots went through the wall and hit another man at the adjacent theater.
Most of the dead victims were inside theater 9 where the newly released Batman movie "The Dark Knight Rises" being screened during the premiere. The suspect who acted alone managed to kill 12 people and injured 58 others, which 9 are still in critical condition, according to Chief Oates.
Media reported, that some of the people were able to run to other sections of the theater and warned others about the shooting. Police say, Holmes was dressed in all black, wearing a gas mask, a bullet proof vest, riot helmet and wore a groin protector. He also went upstairs to other sections of the theater while reloading and firing his weapon randomly at people and children inside, according to surviving witnesses.
A gas mask, two 40 Caliber Glock handguns, 12 gauge shotgun and a AR-15 assault rifle were recovered by police. The AR-15 rifle, the shotgun and a handgun were recovered inside the theater. Police say, the assault rifle had jammed during the shooting spree. The other handgun was found in Holmes vehicle. Police estimated Holmes had more than one thousand rounds of various ammunitions.
Authorities confirmed, Holmes purchased the weapons legally within the last six months and had bought up to 6 thousand rounds of ammunition.
Holmes was taken into custody by police immediately after arriving at the scene in the rear parking lot of the theater near his vehicle. Holmes surrendered to police and did not resist arrest. He told police that he was the "Joker." Holmes hair was dyed in red or bright orange when he was arrested, according to police.
Ten of the victims died at the crime scene, including a 6-year-old girl and two died at a local hospital, among those injured were 6 children, including a 3-month-old baby boy who were taken to the Children's Hospital in Aurora. Other surviving victims were being treated in area hospitals for gunshot wounds and tear gas contamination, Chief Oates reported.
Police also went to Holmes apartment to check for other weapons, explosives and gather evidence. Chief Oates confirm, Holmes apartment was booby trapped with wires, unknown chemicals and incendiary materials. Police were able to disarm and neutralize the booby traps.

Deceased victims were identified as:

Jonathan T. Blunk, 26,

Alexander J. Boik, 18,

Air Force Staff Sgt. Jesse E. Chidress, 29,

Gordon W. Cowden, 51,

Jessica Ghawi, 24,

Petty Officer 3rd Class John Thomas Larimer, 27,

Matthew R. McQuinn, 27,

Micayla G. Medek, 23,

Veronica Moser-Sullivan, 6,

Alex M. Sullivan, 27,

Alexander C. Treves, 24,

and Rebecca Ann Wingo, 32.

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