Army psychiatrist Maj. Nidal Hasan, who killed 13 people on a shooting rampage at Fort Hood in 2009, chose not to testify today. The trial has now entered the penalty phase.
Today was Hasan’s last chance to plead for his life. The jury will soon begin their deliberations to decide whether or not the Fort Hood killer will be sentenced to death.
Hasan, who is representing himself, informed the judge that he was resting his case and not submitting any evidence. He also confirmed that he would not be calling any witnesses or testifying in his defense.
The jury, who convicted Hasan last week of killing 13 and wounding a further 30 people, was then asked to leave the courtroom. Shortly afterwards the judge asked Hasan 25 quick-fire questions, to which he responded in kind, with equally short and quick answers.
She then asked him if he fully understood the implication of his decisions. He told her “It is my personal decision,” continuing, “It is free and voluntary.”
Judge, Col. Tara Osborn, said that closing arguments on the case will be heard on Wednesday. It is not clear whether the convicted man will address the court or not. Hasan has barely defended his actions during the case, nor has he shown any noticeable remorse.
The Fort Hood killer also neglected to call any of his own witnesses during the proceedings and he didn’t even testify in his own defense, prior to his conviction.
Hasan is American born but ethnically Muslim. In various statements to the judge he justified his attack in Fort Hood, saying it was done to protect Islamic leaders from US forces in the middle east.
He also released a report to the media following the shooting saying he believed he could be a martyr, if he were sentenced to death.