After a total of about 13 hours in deliberations, they were ready with verdicts
James Holmes was guilty in the murder of 12 people and attempting to murder dozens more.His defense – that he was legally insane at the time of the shootings – was brushed aside with apparent ease by the nine women and three men of the jury. Two of those jurors had a connection to the Columbine High School shooting 1999, a mass murder that proved the first in a new wave of similar tragedies across the nation.
The Aurora theater trial will now enter a sentencing phase. The jury will determine if Holmes is to receive the death penalty or life in prison.
Had his insanity plea prevailed, he would have been committed indefinitely to a state mental hospital.
Everyone agrees that the defendant was mentally ill, said investigative reporter Chris Vanderveen. The question is of insanity, whether he knew right from wrong.
The jury’s answer to that question was not long in coming.
On the night when his rampage ended 12 lives, destroying the lives of many families along the way, and when he left an another indelible scar of mass murder on the public consciousness, James Holmes knew what he was doing.