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James Holmes charged with 24 counts of first-degree murder in Aurora, Colo., movie theater massacre

Source: Holmes letter warned of shooting
James Holmes, the man accused in the July 20, 2012 Colorado theater massacre

(CBS/AP) AURORA, Colo. - The man accused of opening fire in a crowded movie theater on July 20 was formally charged with 24 counts of first-degree murder and 116 counts of attempted murder Monday.

Pictures: 12 dead, dozens wounded in shooting at Batman movie

James Holmes, 24, appeared in court to hear the charges against him, but unlike his first appearance last week, no video or still cameras were allowed in the courtroom.

Twelve people were killed and 58 people were wounded or injured in the shooting, which took place just after midnight during a showing of the new Batman movie, "The Dark Knight Rises."

Holmes is facing two separate charges for each person killed or injured. The second charge for each alleges that in killing or injuring, Holmes evidenced "an attitude of universal malice manifesting extreme indifference to the value of human life generally."

Holmes is also charged with a one count of possession of explosives. Authorities say he booby trapped his apartment.

Security was tight for Monday's hearing. Armed officers were stationed on the roof of both buildings at the court complex, and law enforcement vehicles blocked entrances to the buildings.

The judge also has placed a gag order on lawyers and law enforcement, sealing the court file and barring the University of Colorado,Denver from releasing public records relating to Holmes' year there as a neuroscience graduate student. A consortium of media organizations, including The Associated Press and CBS, is challenging Sylvester's sealing of the court file.

Legal analysts believe the case will be dominated by arguments over his sanity. Holmes allegedly began stockpiling weapons and ammunition for the shooting perhaps months before the incident. 

"I don't think it's too hard to predict the path of this proceeding," said Craig Silverman, a former chief deputy district attorney in Denver. "This is not a whodunit. ... The only possible defense is insanity."

Last week, Holmes' attorneys revealed that he had been seeing a psychiatrist at the University of Colorado, Denver. The information was made public as part of a motion to find out who leaked information to the media about a package allegedly sent by Holmes to the psychiatrist, Dr. Lynne Fenton.

Media reports had said that the package contained a notebook with descriptions of the attack.

Complete coverage of James Holmes on Crimesider

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