Holmes' lawyers blast Colorado's insanity laws

Friday, March 1, 2013 - 7:33pm

 

Lawyers for James Holmes, the Aurora, Colorado, theater mass shooting suspect, took aim against the state's insanity laws in court documents made public Friday.

"Colorado's statutory scheme regarding the affirmative defense of insanity, and the introduction of any 'mental condition' evidence at trial or sentencing, is unconstitutional in many individual respects," they wrote in a 60-page motion and brief filed Thursday.

The lawyers asked the judge to rule that parts of the state's insanity defense laws are unconstitutional. Among other issues, they cited the requirement that a defendant "cooperate" with examining psychiatrists as a violation of the defendant's privilege against compelled self-incrimination.

Prosecutors have not said whether they will pursue the death penalty against Holmes, who is charged with 166 counts of murder, attempted murder and other charges in the July 20 shooting rampage in a movie theater that left 12 people dead and scores injured. Holmes is awaiting formal arraignment on the charges.
 

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