James Holmes faces judge for first time in wake of Aurora, Colo., movie theater mass shooting

Updated at 2:02 p.m. ET

(CBS/AP) The suspected gunman in the Colorado theater massacre faced a judge Monday in his first court appearance after the horrific attack on midnight moviegoers at a Batman film premiere.

Wearing orange-red hair and looking at times emotional and at other times bleary-eyed, James Holmes sat in a maroon jailhouse jumpsuit as Chief Judge William Sylvester advised him of the case.

At one point, he closed his eyes as the judge spoke. Holmes didn't speak at all during the hearing. His attorneys answered for him when the judge asked if he understood his rights. Attorney Tamara Brady, from the state public defender's office, sat next to him in a jury box; attorney Daniel King is also assigned to his case.

After the hearing, Eighteenth Judicial District Attorney Carol Chambers told reporters that she didn't have any information about whether Holmes was on medication.

She also said Holmes likely wouldn't stand trial for at least a year. In response to a reporter's question, she said she wouldn't describe the case as a "slam dunk."

"I would say there's no such thing as a slam-dunk case," said Chambers. "We're still looking at the enormous amount of evidence."

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Prosecutors would usually have 72 hours to formally charge the 24-year-old Aurora resident, who is originally from California, but Sylvester granted the prosecutors' request to extend the deadline until next Monday.

Chambers told reporters her office is considering pursuing the death penalty against Holmes. She said a decision will be made in consultation with victims' families.

"Victims will be impacted by that decision for years," Chambers said, noting that pursuing the death penalty lengthens the judicial process.

Relatives of at least five victims were present in the courtroom during the hearing, including the father of shooting victim Alex Teves, who sat in the front row with his eyes fixed on Holmes. One woman's eyes welled up with tears during the proceedings.

David Sanchez, who waited outside the courthouse during Holmes' hearing, said his pregnant daughter escaped uninjured but her husband was shot in the head and was in critical condition.

"When it's your own daughter and she escaped death by mere seconds, I want to say it makes you angry," Sanchez said.

Sanchez said his daughter, 21-year-old Katie Medely, and her husband, Caleb, 23, had been waiting for a year to watch the movie.

Asked what punishment would be justified if Holmes is convicted, Sanchez said, "I think death is."

Holmes had been held in solitary confinement at an Arapahoe County detention facility since Friday on suspicion of first-degree murder, and he could also face additional counts of aggravated assault and weapons violations.

Authorities disclosed that he is refusing to cooperate and that it could take months to learn what prompted the mass shooting.

Aurora Police Chief Dan Oates said Sunday that the former doctoral student has "lawyered up" since his arrest early Friday, following the shooting at an Aurora theater that left 12 dead and 58 wounded, some critically.

"He's not talking to us," the chief said.

On CBS' "Face the Nation" Sunday, Oates said Holmes' arrest immediately after the shooting was the result of observant police officers who noticed something off about the man dressed in black tactical gear.

(Watch at left)

"There was one particular piece of equipment that he had on him that was out of place, and I am so proud of my officers that they spotted that right away and challenged him," Oates said.

That piece of equipment was a non-regulation gas mask. Holmes was arrested at the scene.

Oates also said there was some information about a possible relationship in Holmes' life that authorities were investigating.

On "CBS This Morning" Monday, CBS News senior correspondent John Miller reported that investigators understand that there is a girlfriend in the picture.

"This is somebody they've either talked to or need to talk to," said Miller, "but they still haven't assessed whether that was a factor or how much."

During the attack early Friday, Holmes allegedly set off gas canisters and used a semiautomatic rifle, a shotgun and a pistol to open fire on theater-goers, Oates said. Holmes had bought the weapons at local gun stores in the past two months. He recently bought 6,000 rounds of ammunition over the Internet, the chief said.

The gunman's semiautomatic assault rifle jammed during the attack, forcing him to switch to another gun with less firepower, a federal law enforcement official told The Associated Press. That malfunction and weapons switch might have saved some lives.

Oates said a 100-round ammunition drum was found in the theater, but he said he didn't know whether it jammed or emptied.

The shooting was the worst in the U.S. since the Nov. 5, 2009, attack at Fort Hood, Texas. An Army psychiatrist there was charged with killing 13 soldiers and civilians and wounding more than two dozen others.

Holmes has been held without bond at the lockup in Centennial, Colo., south of Denver and about 13 miles from the Aurora theater.

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