CENTENNIAL, Colo. (CBS4) – $685,461. That’s how much attorneys with the Arapahoe County District Attorney’s office have spent prosecuting James Holmes.
Salaries for victims’ assistants comprise the bulk of the costs at $377,194. Other costs include $163,000 for expert witness fees, $21,074 for victims’ travel expenses to preliminary hearings and $11,241 for a DA investigator. Grants provide money for the victims’ costs and the state pays for expert witnesses. The prosecution’s net expenses are $95,000 so far.
CBS4 obtained those figures through an open records act request and hasn’t received costs for Holmes’ public defense team.
“Death penalty cases themselves are higher [in costs] than other types of cases,” Karen Steinhauser, a CBS4 legal analyst, said. “But then you have to factor in this case is so unique because of number of victims.”
In court Thursday, attorneys told Judge Carlos Samour he should bar the public and press from the jury selection process.
Holmes’ defense team told the judge it worries about “a crushing media presence” overwhelming jurors and affecting their client’s ability to receive a fair trial. The prosecution said it wants the final step in the juror selection process open to the public. Steinhauser said she wasn’t aware of a case in which the public was kept from the full juror selection process.
Samour ruled Holmes, 25, can be present when potential jurors are brought into court.
Holmes, who has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, is accused of killing 12 and injuring more than 70 in the July 20, 2012, shootings at an Aurora movie theater.
His trial is scheduled to begin in October, barring delays.