Full coverage of the shootings at the midnight showing of "The Dark Knight Rises" in Aurora, Colo.

Colorado Movie Massacre Suspect Cuts Off His Orange Hair

James Holmes appeared more alert in court Thursday than at past hearings

By Sam Schulz
|  Thursday, Sep 20, 2012  |  Updated 1:51 PM EDT
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
Aurora, Colo., Cinema Rampage Remembered

NBC News

This courtroom sketch shows shooting suspect James Holmes in a Denver courtroom on Thursday, Sept. 20, 2012. During the hearing he looked more alert and no longer had orange hair.

Photos and Videos
More Photos and Videos

Colorado movie theater massacre suspect James Holmes has cut off his orange hair, appearing in court Thursday with a brown crewcut in its place.

His mutton chops were also gone, and he appeared more alert than in previous appearances since he was charged with killing 12 people and wounding 58 at an Aurora, Colo., movie theater July 20 during a midnight screening of "The Dark Knight Rises."

In the days following the shooting, an image of Holmes in court with bright orange hair, looking dazed and disoriented, dominated media coverage.

Holmes appeared in court Thursday as prosecutors said they were giving up their fight for access to a notebook Holmes mailed a university psychiatrist just before the killings.

They told the court they weren't going to pursue the notebook now because they didn't want to delay court proceedings further and because they would probably gain access to it in the future, anyway, since they expect Holmes' lawyers to pursue an insanity defense, NBC News reported. If Holmes pleads guilty, the notebook will no longer be protected by doctor-patient privilege, they said.

The court had earlier blocked prosecutors from accessing the notebook, ruling that they could not prove that Holmes did not have a doctor-patient relationship with the psychiatrist, Dr. Lynne Fenton, to whom he had mailed it.

The package containing that notebook, which reportedly contained descriptions of killings, did not arrive before Holmes' alleged rampage.

Clad in body armor and heavily armed, Holmes is accused of having fired at random on an audience on the opening night of "The Dark Knight Rises." Police said he told them "I'm the Joker" when they apprehended him outside afterward and told them he had booby-trapped his apartment with explosives.

Status hearings were set Thursday for Oct. 11 and for Oct. 25.

Get the latest headlines sent to your inbox!
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
Leave Comments
What's New
Get Our New iPad App
Now optimized for iPad, NBC 6... Read more
Follow Us
Sign up to receive news and updates that matter to you.
Send Us Your Story Tips
Check Out