CENTENNIAL, Colo. (CN) – Attorneys for accused mass murderer James Holmes on Wednesday sought to delay the trial so they can sift through evidence they say prosecutors recently gave them.
Holmes, 27, is accused of murdering 12 people and injuring 70 others during a midnight screening of the Batman film “The Dark Night Rises” at an Aurora movie theater on July 20, 2012.
If convicted he could be sentenced to death.
Public defender Douglas K. Wilson on Wednesday asked for a continuation to examine new materials submitted by prosecutors. The materials include witness lists, resumes of expert witnesses, reports on conversations among medical doctors, investigator reports and others.
Wilson said he has received 1,603 pages of “new discovery” plus five CDs and a DVD since Dec. 4, 2014.
He said prosecutors submitted three new rebuttal sentencing witnesses and that it will take up to six weeks of “full-time research and preparation” to prepare to cross-examine them and provide Holmes with his constitutionally required legal defense.
Wilson said he is considering hiring more experts in light of the new information and would “need time to get any additional experts up to speed” before jury selection begins.
Once jury selection starts, Wilson said, there will not be time to prepare the potential defense experts.
Prosecutors opposed the motion for continuance, saying the materials were provided quickly and don’t amount to “anything unusual in a case of this nature.”
Jury selection for the trial in Arapahoe County District Court is scheduled to begin Jan. 20, if the court does not approve Wilson’s motion for continuance.
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