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James Holmes: Suspect in movie theater shooting taken to hospital, unable to attend hearing, lawyers say

This photo released on Sept. 20, 2012, by the Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office shows James Holmes. Holmes is being held on charges related to the shooting at an Aurora, Colo., theater on July 20 that killed 12 people and wounded 52. AP Photo/Arapahoe County Sheriff

James Holmes
James Holmes
AP Photo

(CBS/AP) CENTENNIAL, Colo. - Thursday's court hearing for James Holmes, the man charged with perpetrating a mass shooting in a Colorado movie theater, was postponed after his attorneys said he was taken to a hospital Tuesday for unspecified reasons.

PICTURES: The Colorado massacre suspect

Court documents filed Wednesday gave no details about  24-year-old Holmes' condition other than stating that it "renders him unable to be present in court for (Thursday's) hearing." The hearing was scheduled to discuss pretrial motions and media requests for information under state open records laws.

Defense attorneys requested to delay the court date during an emergency hearing on Wednesday. Defense attorney Tamara Brady didn't offer details on why Holmes was taken to a hospital, saying attorneys don't want to disclose privileged medical or psychiatric information.

"It's not as simple as a migraine, and it's not something that will resolve by tomorrow morning," she said.

Prosecutor Rich Orman objected, saying the defense should be required to give more information on Holmes' condition first, but Arapahoe County District Judge William B. Sylvester said that was sufficient information for him and postponed the Thursday hearing until Dec. 10.

Denver media outlets, citing unnamed sources, reported that Holmes injured himself by hitting his head, apparently intentionally, on a jail cell wall. The Arapahoe County undersheriff wouldn't comment on the reports.

Holmes is charged with killing 12 people and injuring at least 58 by opening fire in a crowded theater on July 20 during a midnight showing of the latest Batman movie. He's being held without bail and hasn't entered a plea.

The defense said Wednesday that Holmes has a constitutional right to be present at all hearings in his case and argued the Thursday hearing had to be postponed if he is unable to attend. Holmes didn't attend the emergency hearing.

Holmes mental health became an issue in the case when his lawyers told the judge in early August that Holmes was mentally ill. They have not said whether he would enter an insanity plea.

Holmes appeared alternately dazed and alert in previous court appearances. Attorneys have not said whether he is on medication.

Complete coverage of the Colorado movie theater shooting

  • Crimesider Staff

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