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Jury chosen for trial of Colorado movie theater shooter James Holmes

Opening statements in Colorado movie theater shooting trial will begin April 27

The jurors have been selected in the death penalty trial of James Holmes, who went on a fatal rampage in a Colorado movie theater, and opening statements will begin in two weeks, officials said Tuesday.

The selection of 24 people -- 12 jurors and 12 alternates -- was finalized Tuesday after a process that lasted months, according to Colorado Judicial Department spokesman Rob McCallum.

Opening statements in the trial are to take place April 27, and testimony is expected the following day, McCallum said.

In jury selection, 19 women and five men were chosen to hear the case, and only the judge and attorneys know which jurors are alternates, the Denver Post reported.

The selection process began in January. About 9,000 summonses were sent out.

Holmes opened fire in a sold-out midnight showing of “The Dark Knight Rises” on July 20, 2012, in Aurora, east of Denver. Twelve people were killed and dozens injured when the gunman, wearing body armor, tossed a tear gas canister and sprayed the audience with bullets.

Holmes, now 27, faces dozens of counts of first-degree murder, attempted murder and weapons charges in connection with the theater rampage and the booby-trapping of his apartment, which was rigged with explosives that could have killed anyone who entered.

He has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.

Experts have predicted that if he receives a death sentence, there will be decades of appeals.

The trial has been delayed several times, and, at one point, the defense asked that a new judge handle the proceedings. Its request was denied. 

Special correspondent Jenny Deam contributed to this report.

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Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times

UPDATES

9:56 p.m.: This story has been updated with information about the proceedings. 

This story was originally published at 6:48 p.m.

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