Judge Rejects Holmes' Challenge To Insanity Law

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press
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The judge in the Colorado theater shootings has rejected arguments by defense lawyers that state laws on insanity and the death penalty violate the Constitution.

The judge released his ruling Wednesday in the case against James Holmes, who is charged with killing 12 people and injuring 70 in the July 20 attack on a Denver-area movie theater.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.

Holmes wants to change his plea to not guilty by reason of insanity, but if he does, state law sets out some requirements that the defense claims violate the Constitution.

One requirement says he has to cooperate with doctors who conduct a mental evaluation, and if he doesn't, he loses the right to call expert witnesses about his mental health during the punishment phase of the trial.

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