The prosecutors in the case against James Holmes, the man who is accused of the horrific movie theater attack at a screening of “The Dark Knight Rises” in Aurora, CO last summer that left 12 people dead and 70 wounded, have announced in court on Monday (April 1) that they will be seeking the death penalty.
The announcement comes just days after prosecutors rejected an offer from Holmes’ attorneys that he would plead guilty in effort to avoid execution, Reuters reports. The proposal was deemed an invalid plea-bargain offer, though prosecutors could still agree to a plea before the case heads to trial.
“It’s my determination and my intention that in this case for James Egan Holmes, justice is death,” Arapahoe County District Attorney George Brauchler said during the hearing.
Attorneys for Holmes are expected to argue that is not guilty because of legal insanity at the time of the July 2012 shooting. He has been charged with 24 counts of first-degree murder (double the victim count due to special circumstances), 116 counts of attempted murder, possession of explosive devices and inciting violence.
A new trial date has been set for February 3, 2014.