Fort Hood's Hasan: No Closing Argument

He faces death penalty, chooses not to rebut prosecutors

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Aug 22, 2013 1:28 PM CDT

(Newser) – It seems clear now that Nidal Hasan's decision to act as his own attorney in the Fort Hood shooting trial was really a decision to not act as an attorney of any kind. A day after he rested his case without calling a single witness, Hasan skipped his closing argument, reports the AP. After prosecutors laid out in detail Hasan's role in the 2009 rampage that killed 13 people, the judge told Hasan he could go. "The defense chooses not to make a closing statement," he said.

Hasan's decisions over the last two days seem to support the claim made by his defense team earlier in the military trial that he hopes to get the death penalty, notes CNN. He admitted in his opening statement that he was, in fact, the shooter. The jury of 13 officers will now begin deliberations. If they reach a unanimous guilty verdict, the death penalty is possible.

In this courtroom sketch of court proceedings, U.S. Army Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, right, and defense attorney, Lt. Col. Kris Poppe, left, are shown Wednesday.
In this courtroom sketch of court proceedings, U.S. Army Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, right, and defense attorney, Lt. Col. Kris Poppe, left, are shown Wednesday.   (AP Photo/Brigitte Woosley)
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