Batman Shooting Court Coverage: Joker-Shooter James Holmes was “sought-after neuroscientist-in-training”

AP Photo

CENTENNIAL, Colo. (AP) — James Holmes was growing volatile well before he put on a gas mask and body armor, strapped on a rifle, shotgun, pistol and ammunition, and slipped into a midnight premiere of the Batman film “The Dark Knight Rises.”

He was a sought-after neuroscientist-in-training, but he was falling apart. He told a classmate he wanted to kill people, prosecutors say. He fell out of favor with his professors, who suggested he find a new career. He stopped seeing his psychiatrist, then sent her text messages so threatening that she alerted University of Colorado campus police. He even mailed her his journal, in a package with burned $20 bills.

Months before Holmes opened fire on the audience on July 20, 2012, killing 12 and injuring 70 more in one of America’s deadliest mass shootings, the 24-year-old doctoral student was preparing for violence.

He stockpiled weapons, ammunition, tear gas grenades and riot gear, and rigged his apartment to become a potentially lethal booby trap, cranking techno music in an apparent attempt to lure someone into opening his door. One neighbor who came to complain narrowly avoided a fiery explosion by walking away.

Many observers hope Holmes’ death penalty trial beginning Monday will finally show what twisted a seemingly dedicated scholar into a sadistic killer. Prosecutors have suggested he was angry over his academic decline. But anyone looking for a trigger or tipping point with mass killers is usually disappointed, said J. Reid Meloy, a forensic psychiatrist at the University of California, San Diego.

“There’s no such thing as someone snapping,” said Meloy, who is not involved in the Holmes case. “What we know now is that even if a person is psychotic, they can still plan and methodically go about the preparations to carry out a mass murder.”

Source: News from The Associated Press

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About anomaly

SMiles Lewis has had a lifelong interest in all things anomalous. An early age proclivity at recalling his nightly dreams as well as several personal experiences with ESP, precognition and dream switching bolstered his interest in the paranormal. Shortly after high-school he joined the local MUFON chapter in Austin, Texas. He would later become a MUFON State Section Director for that group as well as leader of the local UFO Experiencer Support and Study Group. A lover of books, SMiles collected over 1000 titles before founding the non-profit Anomaly Archives that serves as the lending library of the Scientific Anomaly Institute (501c3). For over twenty years he has worked with digital audio, video and other bleeding edge internet technologies. He has published his own print journal (E.L.F. Infested Spaces), edited a local paranormal newspaper (Austin Para Times), maintained a large network of websites (ELFIS.net), organized a national UFO conference (NUFOC-38), spoken to anthropologists about UFOs and parapsychology (Encounters with the Fantastic), hosted (and been a guest on) both terrestrial and webradio talk shows and has been podcasting since before the phrase existed. All these efforts and more have led radio talk show host Robert Larson to describe Miles as a “Gonzo Alt-Media Proprietor and Informationalist.” He is also the LOWFI-Texas State Bureau Chief of The League of Western Fortean Intermediatists. SMiles’ current projects include co-hosting PsiOp-Radio with Mack White as part of the many unique shows airing daily on his ANOMALY RADIO Network. He is active with several local non-profits which includes his service on the board of directors for the Institute for Neuroscience And Consciousness Studies (INACS) and the Scientific Anomaly Institute‘s lending library, the Anomaly Archives. His writings can be found within the Archives of his print journal ELFIS and ANOMALY Magazine. In his day job with the Texas State Library and Archives Commission‘s Talking Book Program he manages a Volunteer Recording Studio and audio duplication department and has been a consultant on two digital audio development documents for the Library of Congress‘ National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped.
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