Prosecutors Say Victims of Aurora Shooting Fear for Safety

Yahoo Contributor Network

Prosecutors in the case against alleged Aurora, Colo., movie theater shooter James Holmes filed a response this week, asking the court to redact the names of any victims contained in documents that the court releases to the public. According to the filing, victims have expressed concerns over their privacy and their personal safety. Here are the details.

* The filing was in response to a motion by the City of Aurora seeking to reconsider the court's pretrial publicity orders. In addition, the response states that the media is seeking to unseal the affidavits of probable cause in support of the arrest of Holmes, as well as search warrants and requests for orders for production of documents.

* According to the response, "Since the time this case was filed, unforeseen events continue to adversely affect the daily lives of the victims and witnesses in this case."

* The response goes on to state that motions have been filed in the court by people impersonating victims and witnesses, members of the public have identified victims as participants in conspiracies and have contacted the victims or publicly posted maps with the home addresses and phone numbers of the victims on social media sites.

* According to the response, 18th Judicial District Attorney George H. Brauchler "continues to believe that the continued release of the victims' names potentially compromises the rights of these victims to be free from harassment or abuse throughout the criminal justice process."

* The motion filed by the City of Aurora in January asked that city police and fire officials be able to speak publicly about the city's response to the theater shootings and to release recordings of two 911 calls played in open court.

* "Release of recordings of the two 911 calls played in open court and/or allowing the City to speak about its response will not potentially jeopardize any investigation or the fairness of the judicial process here, because the evidence has already been revealed to millions of people worldwide," the motion stated.

* According to The Denver Post , the lawyers for Holmes are also against the lifting of the gag order that prevents police officers and others from talking about the shootings. Those attorneys stated that "there is 'a great deal' of information related to this case that was not presented at the preliminary hearing, and which has not yet been made public."

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