DENVER (CBS4/AP) – Denver attorney David Lane will represent Patrick Crusius, the accused gunman in the El Paso, Texas mass shooting. Crusius has been charged with capital murder and is being held without bond for the Aug. 3 shooting that killed 22 people. Federal prosecutors have said they are also considering hate-crime charges.
Lane tells CBS4 the defendant is charged in federal court where he is entitled to two attorneys. One of them in this case must be educated in federal death penalty law.
According to an arrest warrant affidavit, Crusius confessed to officers while he was surrendering and later explained that he had been targeting Mexicans.
Twenty-two people were killed and about two dozen were injured. Most of the dead had Hispanic last names and eight were Mexican nationals.
Authorities believe that shortly before the attack, Crusius posted a racist screed online that railed against an influx of Hispanics into the U.S. The document parrots some of President Donald Trump’s divisive rhetoric about immigration, but the writer said his views predate Trump’s rise and that any attempt to blame the president for his actions was “fake news.”
The attack came hours before another mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio, in which nine people were killed. The dual shootings, which killed 31 people in all and wounded dozens more, reignited calls for Congress to take immediate action to reduce gun violence.
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