The move comes in response to a ruling in December by the New York
State Court of Appeals that a state shield law for journalists
protected the New York-based reporter for Fox News, Jana Winter,
from revealing her confidential sources.
Holmes, 26, is charged with multiple counts of first-degree murder
and attempted murder for opening fire inside a suburban Denver
cinema during a late screening of the Batman film "The Dark Knight
Rises" in July 2012.
The mass shooting left 12 people dead and 70 wounded or otherwise
injured in the melee. Holmes has pleaded not guilty by reason of
insanity, and prosecutors have said they will seek the death penalty
if he is convicted.
Days after the massacre, Fox News published an online story from
Winter that said a notebook Holmes sent to a psychiatrist contained
his plans to commit mass murder. The article indicated two unnamed
law enforcement officials had shared the information with Winter.
Lawyers for Holmes said that whoever leaked the information had
violated a gag order by the judge then overseeing the case.
The disclosure by Holmes's lawyers that they will appeal the New
York ruling came at the end of a daylong hearing on Friday centering
on defense challenges to crime scene experts prosecutors intend to
call at trial.
Public defender Tamara Brady told Arapahoe County District Judge
Carlos Samour it was her understanding that defense lawyers will
take the issue to the nation's highest court.
A representative for Fox News did not return a call or email seeking
comment late on Friday.
Arapahoe County Judge William Sylvester, who previously presided
over the Holmes case, in January 2013 ordered Winter to testify and
shed light on her anonymous sources.
[to top of second column]
Also on Friday, defense lawyers objected to crime scene
reconstruction testimony through expert witnesses, on the grounds
that it is unreliable, and on Friday cross-examined FBI forensic
examiner Brett Mills over his findings.
The proceeding followed four days of closed-door hearings held this
week on whether Holmes should undergo a further sanity examination.
Defense lawyers have conceded Holmes was the sole gunman, but have
said he was in the midst of a "psychotic episode" when he went on
the shooting spree.
They also said in court filings that Holmes suffers from a "chronic
and serious mental illness" and should not face the death penalty
should a jury convict him.
After invoking the insanity plea, the former neuroscience graduate
student underwent a court-ordered sanity examination last summer.
Conclusions reached by evaluators have not been made public, but in
November prosecutors sought to have Holmes undergo an additional
evaluation by their experts.
The murder trial had been set to begin next month, but was postponed
indefinitely by Samour after prosecutors filed the request. It is
not known when he will rule on the request.
(Editing by Alex Dobuzinskis and Ken Wills)
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