James Eagan Holmes, the suspect in the Colorado movie theater shooting, appeared bleary-eyed and dazed at a court hearing Monday in which he was advised of possible charges he may face.
Dressed in maroon jailhouse garb and with his hair still colored a shocking orange, Mr. Holmes, who has been held in solitary confinement, did not speak at the brief hearing, in which he was advised of the possible charges he may face.
Cameras were allowed in the courtroom, giving TV viewers their first real glimpse of the man suspected of killing 12 and wounding 58 at a midnight showing of the new Batman movie in an Aurora theater early Friday morning.
“There was no show of emotion,” says Rob McCallum, public information officer for the Colorado Judicial Department, speaking via cell phone from the back of the courtroom.
Holmes appeared with two court-appointed lawyers as the proceedings – known as an advisement where a suspect is advised of possible charges – took less than 15 minutes.
Chief Judge William Sylvester advised Holmes of his legal rights to a jury trial, as well as possible first-degree murder charges against him. The district attorney’s office normally has 72 hours to file charges, but in this case, it will have until Monday, July 30. Most legal observers expect the death penalty to be on the table.
Holmes has been held in solitary confinement in an Arapahoe county facility since Friday and will not be allowed to post bond.
“What’s happening now involves questions for both the defense and prosecution,” says Daniel Filler, a criminal law expert and professor in the Earle Mack School of Law at Drexel University in Philadelphia.