CENTENNIAL, Colo. — The defense in the Colorado theater shooting trial rested its case Friday after trying to show James Holmes was insane when he carried out the deadly 2012 attack, believing each person he killed would increase his self-worth.
Holmes’ public defenders presented two weeks of testimony that featured two psychiatrists who found he met the legal standard for insanity.
Earlier, two court-appointed doctors testified for the prosecution that Holmes knew the difference between right and wrong and therefore was legally sane.
Defense attorneys noted Holmes’ bizarre behavior after the shooting, including playing with paper bags placed over his hands to preserve gunshot residue.
On Friday, they played two silent surveillance videos of Holmes. One showed him running and slamming his head against the wall of his jail cell.
The other, taken at a hospital, showed Holmes naked and tethered to a bed, repeatedly trying to cover his head with a blanket and then a sheet.
Holmes’ lawyers contend he was in the grips of a psychotic episode and should not be held accountable for killing 12 people and injuring 70 at a movie theater in Aurora.
Their star witness, schizophrenia expert Dr. Raquel Gur, said that Holmes showed signs of schizophrenia even before he began post-grad neuroscience studies in Colorado in 2011, and that he was emotionless in 28 hours of interviews over two years.
Gur said Holmes still suffers delusions, including his belief that killing increases his self-worth.
His lawyers also noted a family history of disorders, including an aunt with schizophrenia and an institutionalized grandfather.
Holmes did not testify during the 2½-month trial.
Prosecutors did not call any rebuttal witnesses.