DENVER (Reuters) – A district court judge in Colorado on Wednesday delayed the planned trial in October of accused movie theater gunman James Holmes to allow more time to conduct a second sanity review.
Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for Holmes, who has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to killing 12 people and wounding 70 others in 2012.
Jury selection in the trial had been due to start on Oct. 14, but a state mental hospital said it would not be able to complete a second test of Holmes’ sanity in time.
“The Court has little choice but to grant the examiner’s request,” Judge Carlos Samour said in an order. “(T)his is a complicated and voluminous case, and it is important that the second examination is adequate and complete.”
He said a new trial date would be set at a July 22 hearing.
Holmes, 26, is charged with multiple counts of first-degree murder and attempted murder for the shooting rampage, which took place during a midnight screening of the Batman movie “The Dark Knight Rises” at a suburban Denver theater.
(Reporting by Daniel Wallis; Editing by Susan Heavey)