Documentary Idea | If it had happened in Texas, he'd be dead by now!
by Shirley Wygal
(Royse City, TX USA)
Rebecca Wingo 1979-2012
Oct 1, 2014 - Someone please document the experience of victims and survivors during the upcoming trial of the (Colorado) Aurora theater shooter, James Holmes. We've waited more than 2 years for a trial. Jury selection is scheduled to begin in December, deliberations in February, with a verdict expected 4-6 months later. As we all know, there may be further delays.
Yesterday, September 30, the judge issued a ruling that will allow a camera in the courtroom and media to broadcast the entire trial. This order was not well received by the victims, who in an overwhelming majority voted to advise the judge that the prosecution for the people were against any filming of any part of the proceedings. A small minority were for filming, though many put limitations on what should be allowed. Even the defense pleaded with the judge not to make "a circus" of the proceedings. Still, in what can only be called an arbitrary decision, the judge is allowing video and still photography in the courtroom.
Why is this important? Because he's guilty. Because he's alive. Most mass shooters don't survive their own crimes. Surely none have been given the kind of kid glove treatment Holmes has received. The DA's office say that he has the run of the court now so that he won't get out on an appeal later. Perhaps. At least we accepted that until yesterday's decision came down. Now I see it as just a game, just a job to all of them, judge, DA and Defense. Clearly, it isn't about justice for the victims.
I have all the documents, pretrial motions filed, judge's rulings, etc. The victims comprise a large group, 131 responded when the prosecution asked about our reaction to the media in the courtroom question.
As a group, we are not fond of the press. Yes, there's a gag order in the case, but it didn't apply to victims. Though the DA never directly asked, they preferred we didn't talk to press and if we were going to do an interview, the DA wanted to be informed prior to said interview.
In 2013 there were as many mass shootings, 4 or more shot, as there were days in the year. Yes, in the US. Our tribe is growing. We are parents, siblings, spouses, and most heartbreaking, the children of innocents killed by mass murderers.
Who will tell our story?