Colo. shooting families listen to police testimony

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 8, 2013 at 4:08 am •  Published: January 8, 2013
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Officers found Holmes standing next to his car. At first, Officer Jason Oviatt said, he thought Holmes was a policeman because of how he was dressed but then realized he was just standing there and not rushing toward the theater.

Oviatt said Holmes seemed "very, very relaxed" and didn't seem to have "normal emotional reactions" to things. "He seemed very detached," he said.

At one point, after arresting Holmes, Grizzle asked him if anyone had been helping him or working with him. "He just looked at me and smiled ... like a smirk," Grizzle recalled.

Inside the theater, the movie was still playing on the screen. An alarm was going off and moviegoers' cellphones rang unanswered. There was so much blood on the floor, Grizzle said, that he slipped and almost fell down.

Caleb Medley was wounded in the head, and Grizzle recalled the 23-year-old aspiring comedian struggling to breathe on the way to the hospital. Every time he thought Medley had stopped breathing, Grizzle said, he yelled at the man not to die. Medley survived, and his wife gave birth to their first baby days after the shooting.

Another man Grizzle took to the hospital kept asking where his 7-year-old daughter was. For about half of the trip, Grizzle said, he had to restrain him from jumping from the patrol car. At one point, the man opened the door and tried.

Sgt. Gerald Jonsgaard recalled not finding a pulse on the youngest victim, 6-year-old, Veronica Moser-Sullivan. Jonsgaard had to stop his testimony because he was about to break down in tears.

Two pathologists testified that the victims who died were shot anywhere from one to nine times. Matthew McQuinn, 27, who dived in front of his girlfriend to shield her from the bullets, was shot nine times.

Holmes is charged with more than 160 counts, including murder and attempted murder. The hearing will allow the judge to determine whether the prosecution's case is strong enough to warrant a trial, but it's rare for a judge not to order a trial if a case gets this far.

Legal analysts say that evidence appears to be so strong that Holmes may well accept a plea agreement before trial.

While prosecutors have yet to decide on whether they will seek the death penalty, such a plea could get Holmes a lesser sentence, such as life in prison; help the state avoid a costly trial; and spare survivors and families of those who died from the trauma of going through a lengthy trial.

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Associated Press writer P. Solomon Banda contributed to this report.

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