James Holmes in court Wednesday, prosecutors ready for preliminary hearing
ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colo. — A status hearing on Wednesday for accused Aurora theater gunman James Holmes revealed new details about what should be expected during next week’s preliminary hearing.
Perhaps the biggest piece of news to come out of Wednesday’s status hearing was an objection filed by Holmes’ defense team, who want all hearsay evidence banned from the preliminary hearing. Such evidence is usually allowed at preliminary hearings.
The purpose of the preliminary hearing is to determine if there is sufficient evidence to put Holmes, who stands accused of killing 12 and wounding 58 at an Aurora movie theater in July, on trial.
There was also a 15-minute conversation at the bench at Wednesday’s hearing. This came after the prosecution asked to address the bench privately on People’s motion No. 35.
After the conversation, Chief judge William Sylvester said he would have a ruling on People’s 35 later in the day, though there was no indication given as to the particular nature of the motion.
Holmes will hear a summary of the 166 counts against him at next week’s preliminary hearing, which is expected to begin at 9 a.m. on Monday, and could last all week.
The summary of those 166 charges will include the viewing of 100 exhibits, 911 phone calls and 30 hours of video. It will also include testimony from 70 injured victims. Originally, prosecutors said they were not expecting any victims to testify at the preliminary hearing.
The prosecution and the defense will each be allowed two expert witnesses. The prosecution is expected to have two detectives on hand, while the defense is expected to have at least one mental health expert.
With all of the new information set to be released next week, the Arapahoe County courthouse is expecting massive crowds.
At Wednesday’s status hearing, authorities announced that there will be two courtrooms devoted to Holmes’ preliminary hearing. In all, the court will have a 500-person capacity, with an audio and video feed set up in one courtroom to show the actual proceedings taking place in the other.