American Scene: Judge orders trial for Colo. theater-shooting suspect

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DENVER — A judge ruled late Thursday that there is enough evidence for James Holmes to face trial on charges that he killed 12 people and injured 70 others in a Colorado movie theater last summer.

Judge William Sylvester said prosecutors have established probable cause to proceed with all 166 felony counts they filed against him, including first-degree murder after deliberation, first-degree murder with extreme indifference, and attempted murder. He ordered that Mr. Holmes continue to be held without bail.

Mr. Holmes is due to be arraigned Friday, but his defense attorneys filed papers Thursday afternoon saying he’s not ready to enter a plea. Judge Sylvester noted Mr. Holmes‘ attorneys will likely ask in court Friday that the arraignment be delayed.

Defense attorneys also objected to media requests to bring cameras into the courtroom.

Judge Sylvester’s ruling came after a three-day hearing earlier this week, in which prosecutors laid out their case against Mr. Holmes, 25.

NEW JERSEY

NYC-bound commuter bus hits school vehicle, injures 17

OLD BRIDGE — A New York City-bound commuter bus hit a small school bus from behind, knocking it onto its side, and then slammed into a tree, injuring at least 17 people, two critically, authorities said.

No students were on the Old Bridge school bus, which was on its way to pick up children at an apartment complex, officials said.

The tree caved in the front of the commuter bus, shattering its windshield and pinning the driver’s legs. A large branch protruded from the vehicle’s roof.

The accident occurred one day after a high-speed commuter ferry from New Jersey crashed into a dock in Manhattan, injuring dozens.

The Academy Bus was about midway through its route from Toms River to Wall Street in Manhattan, with four stops left on the run, said Joe Orlando, spokesman for Academy Bus. He didn’t know how many passengers were aboard though he said the bus could carry 55.

CALIFORNIA

Alligator guarding stash of drugs taken to zoo

CASTRO VALLEY — Authorities in California say an alligator named “Mr. Teeth” who apparently was protecting a stash of marijuana has been taken to Oakland Zoo.

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