The Friday shooting at the “Dark Night Rises” premiere in Aurora, Colorado remains at the forefront of America's consciousness -- and the nightmarish memories aren’t disappearing anytime soon.
James Holmes, the self-nicknamed Joker responsible for a horrific movie theater shooting that left 58 people injured and 12 dead, appeared in court for the first time, standing before numerous victims' family members of the victims at Arapahoe County Court.
One father described being in the same room with Holmes.
Tom Teves, whose 24-year-old Alex Teves lost his life during the massacre, says he looked at his son's killer and said to himself: 'You're not such a tough guy now.'
He is being held on suspicion of first-degree murder. He is not allowed to make any contact with his victims’ family members. As seen in the photos, Holmes appeared wild-looking and unkempt with his notorious orange hair he dyed to look more like The Joker.
The entire time Judge William Sylvester advised him of the case Holmes remained silent and looked straight ahead while sitting next to his assigned public defender, Tamara Brady. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty and Carol Chambers, 18th Judicial District Attorney, will consult with victims’ families before deciding whether or not to pursue the penalty. The decision will be made within 60 days of Holmes’ arraignment.
The prosecution of Holmes’ isn’t guaranteed, even though evidence was found in his apartment. Meanwhile, victims’ relatives are already calling for an execution. Many victims’ relatives who appeared in court remarked on Holmes’ “crazy” and “demonic” appearance.
There was something that just wasn’t right. Across the country, many wonder if something was psychiatrically wrong. Holmes will most likely undergo a competency test before trial begins. He could possibly plead insanity, but if his test results claim he is sane, there’s not much of a chance for the defense team.
Facility jailors told the New York Daily News that Holmes has, so far, shown no remorse for his crimes. Instead, he’s just been acting downright crazy, spitting at those around him. In the last few days, much has been revealed about Holmes’ background. He was a bright, neuroscience Ph.D student at University of Colorado, Denver who grew up in an upper-middle-class family in San Diego, California.
He graduated with honors from University of California, Riverside in 2010 and was only one of six applicants accepted into the neuroscience graduate program at the Anschutz Medical Campus of University of Colorado. Recently, he dropped out of his graduate program and had gone through a break up. Some wonder if the breakup was Holmes’ motive; on the other hand, others believe Holmes had been planning his shooting spree for months. A classmate of Holmes says he was obsessed with video games and had lost touch of reality. He was reclusive and only focused on school and video games.
He predominantly kept to himself and rarely interacted with classmates, staff, or professors. There’s much more to research over the next few months and numerous investigators are on the case. Since the shooting, President Obama has visited the victims’ families at the University of Colorado Hospital, cast and crew of The Dark Knight Rises have expressed their condolences, and, this past Sunday night, thousands gathered for a vigil near the Aurora movie theater.
Holmes’ parents, who are going through their own horrible grief, have also expressed their sympathy to the victims’ families. In fact, everyone has expressed their sympathy other than the murderer who so quickly ended lives and tore apart families.