Prosecutors Say Holmes Trial Shouldn’t Be Moved

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James Holmes in court on Sept. 30, 2012 (credit: Bill Robles)

James Holmes in court on Sept. 30, 2012 (credit: Bill Robles)

DENVER (AP) – Prosecutors in the Colorado theater shootings said the judge shouldn’t move the trial out of the suburban Denver county where the massacre occurred in 2012.

In arguments filed Monday and made public Tuesday, prosecutors said it’s too early to consider a change of venue because jury selection is not yet underway, so it’s not clear whether intensive news coverage of the crime and the aftermath has prejudiced potential jurors.

Jury selection is scheduled to start in October.

Prosecutors also disputed the defense claim that news accounts have tainted the jury pool. They cited their own experts to counter a defense expert about whether pretrial publicity affects jurors.

James Holmes, now 26, has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to 166 counts including murder and attempted murder. He is charged with killing 12 people and injuring 70 others who were watching a movie in Aurora, an eastern Denver suburb.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.

Holmes’ attorneys filed a motion three weeks ago asking Arapahoe County District Judge Carlos A. Samour Jr. to move the trial out of the county, saying potential jurors have been exposed to prejudicial news coverage and carry emotional scars from the massacre.

Samour hasn’t said when he will rule on the motion.

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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