Reporter’s lawyers argue to see Holmes’ notebook

July 13, 2013 • Entertainment

FILE – In this June 4, 2013 file photo, Aurora theater shooting suspect James Holmes appears in court in Centennial, Colo. For the first time, lawyers for accused theater shooter James Holmes say he killed 12 people and wounded dozens more at an Aurora movie theater last summer. But Holmes’ lawyers say he was “in the throes of a psychotic episode” at the time. The admission came in a motion filed Tuesday, [auth] July 9, 2013, but made public Wednesday, July 10. (AP Photo/The Denver Post, Andy Cross, Pool, File)

DENVER (AP) — A judge on Friday denied a request from lawyers for reporter Jana Winter to view a notebook that the Colorado theater shooting suspect sent to a psychiatrist before the attack.

Citing unidentified law enforcement sources, Winter reported last year that the notebook contained violent drawings. The notebook’s contents haven’t been publicly confirmed.

Holmes’ lawyers contend that Winter’s sources violated a gag order in discussing the notebook, and they want to know their identities. They say officers who have denied being Winters’ sources may have lied, undermining their credibility as trial witnesses.

Winter’s lawyers had asked to see the notebook’s contents so they could better argue why Winter shouldn’t have to reveal her sources.

Judge Carlos Samour Jr. said in a ruling Friday that it would be the height of irony to allow Winter broader access to information she had no right to obtain in the first place due to the gag order.

Samour also said that if prosecutors and Holmes’ lawyers agree to it, he will review the contents of Holmes’ notebook himself to determine its significance at trial before he decides whether Winter must disclose her sources.

Holmes is accused of killing 12 people and injuring 70 in the July 20 theater attack. He has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to more than 160 counts.

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