Colorado Shooting Suspect Was Seeing Psychiatrist

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James E. Holmes, accused of opening fire Friday in a packed movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, makes his first court appearance Monday, July 23, 2012 giving the public its first look at the 24-year-old former Ph.D. candidate since his arrest.

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(CNN) — Colorado shooting suspect James Holmes was a patient of a University of Colorado psychiatrist before last week’s attack at a movie theater that killed 12 people and wounded scores, according to a court document filed Friday by his public lawyers.

The disclosure was in a request by Holmes for authorities to immediately hand over a package he sent to Dr. Lynne Fenton at the university’s Anschutz Medical Campus.

According to Holmes’ request, the package seized by authorities under a July 23 search warrant was a protected communication.

 

“The materials contained in that package include communications from Mr. Holmes to Dr. Fenton that Mr. Holmes asserts are privileged,” said the document filed by public defenders representing Holmes. “Mr. Holmes was a psychiatric patient of Dr. Fenton, and his communications with her are protected.”

In response, prosecutors asked for District Court Judge William Blair Sylvester to deny the request by Holmes, saying it contained inaccuracies including claims of media leaks by government officials that in reality may have been fabricated by news organizations.

Sylvester granted a hearing on the request for Monday, the same day that Holmes is scheduled to be formally charged in the case.

*Click here for additional coverage on the tragedy in Colorado

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