Aurora movie theater case: Judge rules second sanity exam for James Holmes may be videotaped

ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colo. - The judge overseeing the Aurora movie theater case says the psychiatrist doing the second mental health exam of suspect James Holmes may videotape the meetings.

The judge also ruled three copies of the tape should be made -- one of each party and one for the court.

Holmes has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to charges of killing 12 people and injuring 70 in the July 2012 attack. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.

Because of the insanity plea, Holmes underwent a mandatory sanity evaluation last summer. However, according to court documents, Judge Carlos Samour concluded that the first evaluation conducted by the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo was incomplete and inadequate.

The judge granted prosecutors' request for a second evaluation but said it should be done by another doctor at the state hospital, not by doctors chosen by the prosecutors.

The second psychiatrist asked to videotape the evaluation. The doctor said the videotape will help him better evaluate Holmes.

"It is more accurate and it is more complete," the examiner told the court. "It allows better attention by me to the defendant and to the evaluation itself."

The psychiatrist said the video eliminates the distraction caused by taking notes and eliminates errors in note-taking or memory.

"There's much less potential for misrepresentation of those notes," the examiner said. "Errors and omissions are easier to spot and they're harder to hide."

This week, Holmes' attorneys argued against having the examination recorded. The prosecution said it had no objection.

Samour issued a ruling Thursday saying, "the second examiner may videotape his sanity examination of the defendant."

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