Dark Knight Shooter: I Won't Testify
Defense expected to rest its case today
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 10, 2015 2:42 AM CDT
A sheriff's deputy walks the grounds of the Arapahoe County District Court, where the trial of Aurora movie theater shooter James Holmes continues.   (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)
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(Newser) – Colorado theater shooter James Holmes has chosen not to testify in his death penalty trial. Holmes told Judge Carlos A. Samour Jr. that he had discussed the decision with his attorneys, responding to the judge's questions with direct "Yes" and "No" answers and swiveling slightly in his chair. Had Holmes chosen to testify, prosecutors would have been able to cross-examine him. Samour determined that Holmes' decision not to testify was made "voluntarily and intelligently." Holmes' defense has called a nationally known schizophrenia expert who spent yesterday defending her conclusion that Holmes was so delusional that he was unable to tell right from wrong during the attack.

The defense is expected to rest today after spending two weeks trying to convince jurors that Holmes was insane and should be committed indefinitely to the state mental hospital. They called two psychiatrists, both hired by the defense, who concluded Holmes was incapable of telling right from wrong and was therefore legally insane. Prosecutors argued Holmes was sane and should be executed; they called two court-appointed psychiatrists who testified they believe Holmes could distinguish right and wrong even though he was mentally ill. Jurors will decide whose opinions they trust more. (Holmes' defense tried to block "emotional" testimony from a shooting victim whose daughter was killed.)