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Aurora Theater Shooter Sentenced to Life In Prison, Spared Death Penalty

Aurora Theater Shooter Sentenced to Life In Prison, Spared Death Penalty

Aurora movie theater shooter James Holmes was sentenced to life in prison without parole on early Friday evening (August 7) in Centennial, Colo.

The 27-year-old former neuroscience graduate student will avoid the death penalty after the jury failed to reach the unanimous verdict required for the punishment after his deadly attack on a packed midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises in 2012.

The gunman surrendered immediately following the tragedy and was deemed guilty last month but this was the last portion of the penalty phase during which jurors were deciding between the death penalty or life in prison without parole

This concludes the three-year legal process following the shooting.

Our thoughts are continually with the family and friends of the victims of this unspeakable violence.

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Photos: Getty
Posted to: James Holmes

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  • buttercream

    You gotta be kidding me!!!! I wonder who was the idiot in the jury that would not agree to the death penalty. I hope someone inside the prison takes care of this POS.

  • devvv

    Shout out to the writer for making sure everyone knows that he was a grad student. “Former neuroscience graduate student” oddly doesn’t seem as fitting as current psycho, murderer, and disgusting human being…but you know the media has to make sure everyone’s aware of the fact that white mass murderers weren’t always scum…

  • russia

  • GroundControl500

    The man is clearly mentally ill. The death penalty is inappropriate for those with diminished capacity or those whose behavior is influenced by mental illness. Wasn’t there testimony that this guy was calling out for help before this occurred?

    Actually a really smart and brave jury would have found him not guilty by reason of insanity.

  • Effy

    No, I’m tired of the mentally ill excuse. Tons of mentally ill people get the help they need either by themselves or due to concerned family and friends. I’m tired of wasting money on keep murderers like them alive in jail.I’m not the first one to shout ‘death penalty’ but in this case it’s hard not to. Ask the victims family and friends if they are cool funding his stay in jail for the rest of his life.

  • GroundControl500

    You don’t get to be tired of the fact that mental illness exists and that there are not enough resources available to help those in need of treatment. Not only is the failure of this country to address this need properly and sufficiently shameful but sadly people with your uninformed views are impediments to a citizenry understanding what needs to be done to prevent future tragedies involving mentally ill perpetrators.

    Mental illness is not an excuse. It is a fact of life. It is also by law a factor which must be taken into consideration in both the adjudication of guilt (as in finding legal culpability) and in sentencing.

    Keep calling it an “excuse” and keep hiding it away and keep refusing to spend what’s necessary to help those in need and you can be certain of this repeating.

    This nation is full of people like you who drop all rational thinking the second an issue becomes emotional. That helps no one except the ratings for the Hysterical Ladies Network.

  • Esoteric11

    Actually, I have read it cost more to put a prisoner to death than life in prison. I would have been fine with him getting the death penalty.

  • buttercream

    Go tell your stupid argument to the victims’ families.

  • buttercream

    This nation is full of people that, like you, believe the “mentally ill” should not be executed for their crimes and that’s probably why this POS did not get the death penalty today. Some idiot in the jury that felt sorry for him. He is a MURDERER, what part of it don’t you understand?

  • dalovelee

    He’s white. Plain and simple. Jurors are less likely to give a guy the death sentence if he’s white..if he were black it would have been no doubt about. The needle.

  • buttercream

    Oh please, don’t give me any of that race crap. I’ve heard enough of it already! They didn’t sentence him to death because of ONE stupid juror who wouldn’t budge.

  • dalovelee

    Do your research. Whites do not receive the death penalty as much as black or Hispanic ..that’s statistical facts. If the only variable in this trial that changed was his race.. He’d had gotten all jurors go for DP.

  • GroundControl500

    SMH. Is there some part of the law you don’t understand that says a juror must consider if mental health issues affected the defendant. Thankfully there were some jurors who did their duty as charged by their jury instructions.

    Civilized countries do not execute the mentally ill.

  • GroundControl500

    I see. In the end you do think murder is okay.

  • buttercream

    Death penalty is not murder. Merriam-Webster defines murder as “the UNLAWFUL killing
    of one human being by another.” The death penalty is indeed
    the killing of a human being, but it’s LAWFUL. Military actions, for example, fall into this category. Would you call our soldiers murderers?

  • buttercream

    You should do some research too. The lone juror was a woman. Female jurors are more likely to feel sorry for the defendant and not convict in death penalty cases.

  • buttercream

    There was only ONE juror who would not budge. Probably, someone with your same views. I say civilized countries should execute all MURDERERS, regardless of their sanity.

  • GroundControl500

    James Holmes agreed to plead guilty and accept a sentence of life without parole before trial, but Arapahoe County District Attorney George Brauchler would not agree and insisted on a far more costly death penalty trial. The cost of this trial is estimated to be between $5 and $10 million.

    ALL of the doctors that testified at trial testified that Holmes suffered from severe mental illness.

    There is only one appropriate sentence for someone who commits acts – not matter how horrible – under the influence of such severe mental illness. And that sentence is NOT the death penalty.

    This was a show trial for the prosecutor. Nothing more. Shame on him for putting the community and these families through this.

  • GroundControl500

    Yes. You are correct. Statistically minorities and defendants in cases in which the victims are white have historically received a higher proportion of death sentences.

    Colorado has received a great deal of criticism for applying the death penalty arbitrarily.

    The defense team deserves great credit as these are enormously difficult and exhausting cases to defend. This is a tremendous win for them.

  • GroundControl500

    If that’s true then thankfully this juror heeded the court’s jury instruction in deciding this phase of sentencing in regards to victim impact statements:

    “The Court instructs you that you must not be swayed by emotion. Remember that your final sentencing verdicts must not be influenced by prejudice, bias, passion, sentiment, conjecture, public opinion or feeling, or any other irrational or arbitrary emotional response. Rather, each of you must make a reasoned moral determination as to the appropriate sentence on each count.”

    “In reaching your final sentencing verdicts, you must treat the defendant as a uniquely individual human being. Further, you must not be influenced by prejudice or bias of any sort against the defendant or the prosecution, and you must not consider any public opinion or community sentiment for or against the defendant or the prosecution. Your decisions in Phase 3 of the sentencing hearing may not be the result of mere prejudice, bias, passion, sentiment, conjecture, public opinion or feeling, or any other irrational or arbitrary emotional response. Rather, each of your final sentencing verdicts must reflect your individual reasoned moral determination.”

  • GroundControl500

    Then you’re simply an ignorant idiot.

  • GroundControl500

    Your logic fails you.

    You said: I hope someone inside the prison takes care of this POS.

    That is murder.

  • buttercream

    Then…hell yes murder is okay. So what?

  • buttercream

    So now you are calling me names? No more arguments, huh?

  • buttercream

    Whomp whomp

  • Lilly

    Although I agree with you as I’m putting myself in the shoes of the family members who lost someone In a flash and in a movie theatre where you never think it could happen , I do feel he got a worse punishment because being in jail for life at such a young age he will suffer more Inside and always on alert because we know what happens inside sometimes and the death penalty would be an easy way out for him . This way he can rot thinking about those lives he took till he’s old and grey.

  • GroundControl500

    Intelligent arguments are lost on you. Go reread mine.

    Name calling? “idiot in the jury” “your stupid argument” “stupid juror”

    Seriously after your name calling now you’re whining about me calling you out for what you are? Go to sleep and pray for a brain.

  • buttercream

    Intelligent arguments? bwahaha! Is that what you call your gibberish? Get over yourself.

  • bekkah

    neuroscience graduate student? That’s how you are going too portray him? With such a high title….how about convicted murderer. Disappointed in you just jared.