James Holmes found guilty in Aurora movie theater shooting trial

Posted at 3:34 PM, Jul 16, 2015

James Holmes was found guilty in the Aurora movie theater shooting trial by a jury of 9 women and 3 men. 

District Court Judge Carlos Samour read the counts, starting with the murders of 12 people who died in the July 20, 2012 mass shooting. Holmes was found guilty of first-degree murder for all 12 victims.

This means the jurors rejected the not guilty by reason of insanity defense offered by the public defender. It also means the case will advance to the penalty and sentencing phase, where prosecutors will work to convince the same jury that the defendant deserves the death penalty. 

-- Deliberations --


Jurors began deliberations around 9 a.m. Wednesday morning, after a late night hearing closing arguments. Once their work began, the jurors quickly selected a foreperson and got to work.

They ended at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday and resumed deliberations at 8 a.m. Thursday. the jurors turned in the verdict at 1 p.m. -- roughly 5 hours of deliberation.

The jury was asked to decide on two counts of first-degree murder for each of the 12 victims killed in the July 20, 2012 mass shooting. It also includes two counts of attempted murder for each of the 70 victims who were wounded and one count regarding the explosives and incendiary devices set up inside the gunman's apartment.

Prosecutors are pursuing the death penalty for James Holmes.

-- Trial summary --

The process of selecting the 12 jurors and their alternates began in late January and concluded in April.

On April 27, jurors heard opening statements from both parties. Forty-six days of testimony followed before attorneys presented their closing arguments on July 14.

"He leaves nothing to chance," Brauchler said during his closing argument Tuesday. "He's planned for all the contingencies and all of that planning goes to (his) intent."

Read more of DA Brauchler's closing arguments

"When he walked into that theater, the evidence is clear that he could not control his thoughts," Defense attorney Dan King said during his closing argument. "The psychotic process had obscured his ability to think about things the way that we do."+

Read more about King's closing arguments for the defense

The jury obviously decided to believe the prosecution's theory of the case.