Judge dismisses fifth juror in Colorado movie massacre trial
James Holmes sits in court for an advisement hearing at the Arapahoe County Justice Center in Centennial, Colorado in this June 4, 2013 file photo. REUTERS/Andy Cross/Pool/Files

The judge in the Colorado movie theater massacre trial on Wednesday dismissed a fifth juror, who said she recognized a survivor of the July 2012 mass shooting and prompted the defense to seek her removal.


The dismissal leaves a panel of 19 jurors, including 14 women and five men, to hear the murder trial of former neuroscience graduate student James Holmes, who is charged with fatally shooting 12 people and wounded 70 others during the premiere of a Batman film at a Denver-area multiplex.

Arapahoe County District Judge Carlos Samour said he was letting the latest juror go because she had not been entirely open about knowing a wounded survivor of the rampage who testified during the trial's second week.

"I don't believe you have been completely forthcoming and candid with me," Samour told her.

Samour previously dismissed four jurors, including three last week on the grounds they were tainted after hearing about a prosecutor's Twitter message, and after they discussed the possibility of a mistrial.

The judge dismissed a fourth juror on Monday whose brother-in-law was recently the victim of a shooting and who had become emotional in front of other panel members.

Holmes, 27, has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to multiple charges of first-degree murder and attempted murder. He could face the death penalty if he is convicted.