A dark night in Aurora, Colorado – so morbid, it was worthy of the filthy comic-book streets which inspired its events. 12 people gunned-down during a midnight screening of the latest Batman movie, “The Dark Knight Rises.” The largest peacetime mass shooting in United States history.
24-year-old unemployed, reportedly “brilliant,” former neuro-surgeon student, James Holmes, was arrested soon after the massacre. His face reportedly painted to look like the ‘Joker’ character – famously portrayed by Jack Nicholson and the late Heath Ledger in the movie franchise. He introduced himself to police, after the attack, as “The Joker.”
Taking a page from his macabre fictional inspiration, Holmes executed a complex and callous murder plot. After buying a ticket and entering the theatre, he snuck out an exit door, leaving it ajar. Holmes returned later in full para-military gear – much of it bought online, undetected.
A tear-gas canister preceded a hail of bullets. 12 people were killed, as many as 58 people were injured. Amateur video above shows bloodied movie-goers leaving the cinema. Below, local hospital officials rushed into action and described the situation to the BBC. The youngest victim was as young as 3 months old.
At his apartment, Holmes left a complex web of booby-traps and explosives. Police say it will take days to disentangle. Much longer to decipher what is going on the mind of John Holmes – who reportedly a day later, was still in character, spitting at guards – trapped somewhere between comic book fiction and reality.
More eyewitness video below: