DA: Holmes defense tried to sway potential jurors

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Associated Press

Posted on April 29, 2014 at 4:32 PM

Updated Tuesday, Apr 29 at 6:33 PM

DENVER (AP) — Prosecutors in the Colorado theater shootings are accusing the defense of trying to influence potential jurors when they publicized James Holmes' willingness to plead guilty in exchange for a life sentence.

The allegation was part of a filing released Tuesday.

Holmes pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to charges of killing 12 people and injuring 70 in a Denver suburb in 2012.

In a March 2013 filing, defense attorneys said Holmes would plead guilty if he could avoid execution. Prosecutors rejected the offer.

In their new filing, prosecutors speculated that Holmes' public defenders thought publicizing the offer might help them find a juror who wouldn't want to impose the death penalty.

Under Colorado law, a single juror is enough to block execution.

The public defender's office didn't immediately return a call for comment.

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