CENTENNIAL — The man accused of committing one of the worst mass murders in U.S. history sat quietly beside his defense attorney in court this morning, his hair dyed a reddish orange, his face changing from blank stare to wide-eyed and dazed.
James Eagan Holmes, 24, was advised by his attorneys not to speak during the proceeding.
He is being represented by Tamara Brady and Daniel King, members of the state public defender’s capital cases team, the group of attorneys who represent clients in death penalty cases.
A prosecutor told the Associated Press this morning that Holmes could face the death penalty. Formal charges are expected to be filed on Monday.
Eighteenth Judicial District Chief Judge William Sylvester entered a protection order, requiring Holmes not to have contact with victims or witnesses. He also sealed the records in the case.
Sylvester ordered Holmes held without bond.
The purpose of the hearing, known as an advisement, was to tell Holmes about the murder charges on which he is currently being held. A formal filing of charges by the district attorney’s office will come later. Prosecutors could add to or change his charges in between.
Advisement hearings are typically short — perhaps only a few minutes — and may not even require the suspect to speak. Nonetheless, the hearing will allow the public its first look at Holmes since the early Friday shootings that killed 12 and injured 58 and may provide new insight into how lawyers on both sides intend to approach his case.
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