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Colorado theater shooting: Not guilty plea entered for James Holmes
Hearing » Judge enters a not guilty plea for suspect after his attorneys said they weren’t ready to respond to charges that he murdered 12 people and tried to kill 70 others.


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Sylvester also set hearings for the week of May 13, to argue motions in the case, and for July 25, to determine readiness for trial. The trial is scheduled to begin Aug. 5 and last for at least four weeks. Prosecutors estimated it could actually take twice as long.

Unexpected delays have become the norm for the case. When Holmes entered Tuesday’s hearing, he appeared to have but three options before him.

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He could have pleaded not guilty and faced a jury trial to determine if he did it. He could have pleaded guilty, skipping the trial and setting up a sentencing hearing to decide his punishment. Or he could have pleaded insanity, spurring the court-ordered evaluation and a trial to determine whether he is sane.

Instead, with inscrutable silence, Holmes chose none.

"He’s a hollow person, very evil," said Jessica Watts, the cousin of slain theater victim Jonathan Blunk. "He’s absolutely not insane. ... Just, he doesn’t seem like he does a whole lot to help himself. He doesn’t seem real interested in what’s going on in his own future."

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