By now, there’s not a person in America (and much of the world) who hasn’t heard about what happened in a crowded movie theater in Colorado on July 20, 2012. On that date, a 24-year-old former Ph.D. student in neuroscience, who cut his studies short in June, is said to have entered the theater armed with a plethora of weapons, including a semi-automatic assault rifle, and opened fire on the moviegoers.
In this extremely violent crime, James Eagan Holmes is alleged to have killed 12 people, injured 58, and has since been charged with more than a hundred counts of both murder and attempted murder.
It generally goes without saying that most violent crime does not involve a gun rampage. This case is infamous because, in addition to the grisly facts of the crime, Holmes dyed his hair orange, called himself “The Joker,” and opened fire at a screening of the latest Batman movie. Legal commentators suggest that prosecutors and defense attorneys will argue the issue of insanity.
According to CBS News, Holmes has been placed in solitary confinement so as to avoid the possibility of serious injury perpetrated by other inmates. Moreover, there were no TV cameras in the courtroom; the judge said that too much media attention could affect Holmes’s right to a fair trial.
And that’s exactly the point we want to make: the facts of this case are indeed grisly, and the outcry over such a violent crime involving guns has been loud and insistent. What we must remember is that James Eagan Holmes still has a right to a fair trial, and to be considered innocent until proven guilty.
If you are facing criminal charges, contact a Maryland criminal attorney before you talk to anyone else.