Prosecutors on Tuesday played the first chaotic and sometimes difficult-to-understand 911 calls from the July 20 movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado, during James Holmes’ preliminary hearing.
Gunshots can be heard in the background of some of the calls. The hearing will determine if there’s enough evidence against Holmes to send his case to trial. The hearing is expected to last a couple more days.
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Aurora police detective Randy Hansen testified Tuesday that the first call placed to authorities was around 18 minutes after the film started. In total, 41 calls were made to 911, he said.
Some of the calls were difficult to understand, because the movie was still playing, and the shooter was still in the theater. In one of the calls, a 911 operator walks a frantic 13-year-old girl through how to give CPR to a shooting victim that was still breathing.
Family members of victims attending the proceedings consoled each other as the 911 calls were played.
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After detailing the 911 calls, prosecutors turned their attention to the explosives Holmes allegedly wired his apartment with for more carnage.
The photos displayed in court showed jars of homemade napalm with bullets suspended inside and topped with thermite, a material that burns so hot that it's nearly impossible to put out.
Holmes is facing more than 150 criminal charges, including 24 counts of first-degree murder. Holmes has not entered a plea.
If Holmes' case goes to trial, his attorneys are expected to argue that their client has "diminished capacity," a term that the Colorado Bar Association relates to a person's ability or inability "to make adequately considered decisions" regarding his or her legal representation because of "mental impairment or for some other reason."