Prosecutors in the Aurora theater shooting case have given up the fight for a notebook sent by the accused, James Holmes, to his psychiatrist before the July 20 massacre. They say that they don’t want to delay the case any further, and reason that they’re likely to get their hands on it as the case proceeds anyway.
Reports the Denver Post, prosecutors in the Arapahoe County Courthouse Thursday morning said that they’d stop pursuing James Holmes’ notebook, which could be a journal containing evidence that the prosecution might deem valuable. They believe that the debate over the notebook would delay the case for months, and contend that they’ll gain access to it down the road anyway.
“There’s a high degree of likelihood that whatever privilege exists in the notebook will end up being waived by the defendant” said prosecutor Rich Orman regarding the defense’s possible pursuit of an insanity plea.
According to NBC News, Holmes’ notebook might contain descriptions and drawings of a violent attack.
Giving up the fight for the notebook is a risky move, notes the Post. If the defense does opt for the insanity plea, then Holmes waives any privilege to it, but that doesn’t automatically mean that the prosecution will be allowed access to it. “It is very possible,” said former judge Christina Habas, “but it’s not 100 percent certain.”
Holmes is facing 142 counts, including 24 counts of first-degree murder and 116 counts of attempted first-degree murder, plus one count of possession of an explosive device and one count of sentence enhancement for allegedly committing a crime of violence. The prosecution asked the judge yesterday to add 10 more counts to Holmes’ charges.
Holmes reportedly appeared in court today without his muttonchop sideburns and unkempt red hair, having had both recently cut.