For the past week and a half, we have been watching the Aurora, Colorado “Dark Knight” massacre unravel, and today the suspected shooter, 24-year-old James Holmes, has been charged with 24 counts of 1st degree murder, two for each of the 12 victims he shot and killed at the movie premiere on July 20.
In full, Holmes was hit with 142 charges, including 116 counts of attempted murder (two counts for each of the 58 injured movie goers during the shooting), as well as one count of possessing an explosive device and one count of unlawful use of a deadly weapon.
Holmes spoke for the first time in court, answering a quiet “yes,” when the judge asked if he was OK with his lawyers requesting more time before entering his plea. Prosecuters have not yet decided if they will seek the death penalty, but the murder and attempted murder counts have been split in two, giving prosecutors two options to convict Holmes by either establishing that the crime was premeditated or that Holmes acted with extreme indifference to the value of human life.
Holmes’ next court date is August 9. [TMZ]