COLORADO SPRINGS: Robert L. Dear Jr. was charged with 179 counts on Wednesday, including first-degree kill, in bond with the deadly shooting rampage last month at a Planned Parenthood clinic.
Bearded, unkempt and cuffed at the legs and arms, Dear repeatedly disrupted the proceedings in state court here, shouting out declarations of anger and defiance.
“I’m criminal. There’s no trial. I’m a fighter for the babies,” he yelled at one point. “Let it all come out. The truth!” he yelled at another.
As Judge Gilbert A. Martinez dissert a pretrial publicity order, Dear shouted: Could you add the babies that were notional to be aborted that day?
It was the first in-person attendance in court for Dear since his arrest on Nov. 27 after the attack on the clinic, which left three people dead and nine wounded. He was arrested by the police after a tense, hourslong, nationally televised standoff.
57 has been Mentioned by relatives and neighbors as a loner with an anti-government worldview, and as a person who has explicit extreme anti-abortion views, according to an ex-wife and others. According to one law-actuation official, Dear said “no more baby parts” to investigators after his arrest. But authorities have not publicly ascribed a motive to the shooting.
Dear appeared in court via video link in a hearing in which authorities lodged an initial criminal charge of first-degree murder.
After that hearing, Dan May, the district attorney for Colorado’s 4th Judicial District, declined to say whether he would seek the death penalty, and said that he had “been in discussion” with federal officials about the possibility of federal charges.
On Wednesday, Jeff Dorschner, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney for Colorado, said that a federal investigation headed by the FBI and assisted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms was continuing.
Dorschner said that the federal investigation was “focused and is meticulous, but that he could not say when federal charges might be filed. Federal authorities, are “doing everything we can in support of the state investigation and the district’s attorney’s state complaint.
Authorities in Colorado said Dear entered the Planned Parenthood clinic here and turned the building and the surrounding shopping center into a scene of horror, using a semiautomatic rifle to fatally shoot an Iraq war veteran, Ke’Arre Stewart, 29; a police officer at the local campus of the University of Colorado, Garrett Swasey, 44; and a mother of two children, Jennifer Markovsky, 35.
Of the nine victims who were shot and outlast, four were Colorado Springs police officers and one was an El Paso County sheriff’s deputy. On Tuesday, the police department announced that the wounded officers and deputy had all been revealed from the hospital. The department did not release their names.
All of them are still protect from their injuries and will need time out of the public eye to do so.