Seconds Before Shooting, Holmes Called Crisis Line

Massacre carried out 'on autopilot,' he told psychiatrist
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 2, 2015 11:58 PM CDT
Updated Jun 3, 2015 4:18 AM CDT
Seconds Before Shooting, Holmes Called Crisis Line
This screenshot made from a PDF released by the Colorado Judicial Department shows a portion of Aurora shooter James Holmes' notebook.   (Colorado Judicial Department via AP Photos)

James Holmes thought he might be stopped before the Dark Knight massacre and he "kind of" regrets that he wasn't. In hours of interviews from last year being presented at his murder trial, Holmes tells a psychiatrist that as he donned body armor outside the theater, he thought the FBI would pounce—and he called a crisis hotline for "one last chance to see if I should turn back," reports the AP. Holmes says the call was disconnected in nine seconds, before anybody answered, and he says that even if somebody had tried to stop him, "it would have been overruled," the Denver Post reports. Holmes says he "kind of" regrets that the psychiatrist who warned police about him weeks before the shooting didn't have him locked up, though he also says he was careful not to reveal his plans.

Holmes also tells Dr. William Reid how he kept the killings "impersonal," with loud music through headphones drowning out screams and a gas mask keeping him from smelling smoke, the Post reports. He says he was "on autopilot" as he carried out the killings, and he only remembers seeing one victim. Holmes tells Reid his self-worth was boosted by one "value unit" for each death and he considered 12 dead a "moderate success," per the AP. Reid has testified that he believes Holmes was legally sane and that his actions before the shooting were those of someone who is "concerned about getting caught or getting stopped and in many ways wants to be caught," the New York Times reports. (Holmes' diary is also a major part of the trial.)

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