'Dark Knight' Shooter James Holmes In Courtroom: Was He Medicated?
Since James Holmes' bizarre appearance in a Centennial, Colorado courtroom yesterday to face a preliminary hearing about the early Friday shooting that left 12 people dead and 58 injured, people have been questioning whether or not the alleged shooter at the Aurora premiere of The Dark Knight Rises was on any medication.
When Holmes faced the court, presided over by Chief Judge William Sylvester, he seemed visibly disinterested in the proceedings, intermittently dropping his head, staring at the table before him, closing and widening his eyes and rapidly blinking. Holmes sat with Tamara Brady, one of his public defenders, as Sylvester explained why he would not be setting bail in the case.
Despite speculation that Holmes might have been on medication during the hearing, when not only the public, but many of the victims' families, who were present in the courtroom, got their first real glimpse of Holmes, sources tell ABC News that Holmes was not medicated during his appearance in the courtroom. Even so, it has also been said that he has been demonstrating "a pattern of bizarre behavior since his arrest" immediately following the shooting incident.
During the arrest, Holmes reportedly told authorities that he was "the Joker," the famous villain from the Batman series, who has been portrayed in recent movies by both Jack Nicholson and the late Heath Ledger. The news network also reported that, when law enforcement officers put bags over Holmes' hands immediately following his arrest, he started to pretend like they were puppets.
It has also been reported that Holmes' apartment was booby trapped with numerous explosives to slow police down when they inevitably went to investigate the home.
The information that Holmes was not, in fact, medicated, led speculators and experts alike to suggest that he was either experiencing a "psychotic episode" or was, in fact, faking his bizarre behavior. "I think there are two possibilities here," expert psychologist Marissa Randazzo told Good Morning America. "One is that he's in the middle of a psychotic episode, which is quite possible. We see him distracted at multiple points, an almost sort of 'coming to' and trying to figure out where he is and process what's going on," Randazzo suggested, also mentioning that there was a possibility Holmes' behavior could be explained by the post-effects of mania.
Another possible option, she said, is something that people online have been throwing around — that Holmes might be faking his weird actions in order to support a later insanity plea. "It is possible," Randazzo said. "We'll leave that open."
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