Ft. Hood Judge Refuses to Remove Death Penalty

Also denies Nidal Hasan's request to change venue
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Mar 21, 2013 2:37 AM CDT
In this courtroom sketch, US Army Maj. Nidal Hasan, center foreground, is seen sitting between members of his defense team during a hearing in Fort Hood, Texas, Dec. 18, 2012.   (AP Photo/Brigitte Woosley)

(Newser) – A military judge is looking to move the three-plus-year-old case against the accused Fort Hood shooter forward, ruling last night that, in accordance with Army rules, Maj. Nidal Hasan cannot enter guilty pleas in exchange for stripping the death penalty from the case. Judge Tara Osborn also refused Hasan's request for a change of venue, notes Reuters, and has set jury selection for his court martial for May. "I think she is sensitive to the fact that this has dragged on for a long time, and it's time to get this case to trial," says a law professor. (Read more Fort Hood shooting stories.)

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