CENTENNIAL, Colo. – The judge in the Colorado shooting case did not immediately rule Monday on whether jurors will be able to see a holding-cell video of defendant James Holmes taken the same day the sheriff's department released a new photograph of him to the public.
Although the video has not been publicly described in detail, more about it emerged during Monday's two-hour hearing.
Prosecutors want to show the video during Holmes' trial. Defense attorneys asked the judge to exclude it, saying they had not had time to assess its significance because prosecutors and jail staff gave it to them too late.
The judge did not indicate when he would rule on the request.
Arapahoe County Undersheriff Louie Perea testified that the 11-minute video was taken in a holding cell at the courthouse on Sept. 20, 2012, two months after the theater attack. It showed what Perea described only as a "safety and security issue" and that he wanted to use the video for training purposes.
Perea, who was in charge of jail operations at the time, said he made changes in procedure as a result of what can be seen in the video. But he did not elaborate.
He said Holmes' behavior was "not unusual," and that other inmates and offenders often do the same thing.
The day the video was made, the Arapahoe sheriff's office released a booking photograph showing Holmes with newly trimmed brown hair. The photo, in which Holmes has a beard and moustache and looks steadily into the camera, contrasts with a photo the sheriff's office released days after the July 20, 2012, shooting in which he has longer hair dyed red and little facial hair.
Prosecutors agree the sheriff's department should have shared the video with defense attorneys earlier, but they argue they should not be punished for the delay.
Holmes has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to charges of killing 12 people and injuring 70 in the attack at a Denver-area movie theater. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.
Jury selection began Jan. 20 with thousands of potential jurors filing into the courthouse to fill out lengthy questionnaires. Those who were not excused will return starting Wednesday for individual questioning about their views on mental illness, the death penalty and other matters.