James Holmes info the media wants from CU and isn't getting
While CU is able to refute misinformation in the James Holmes case (like prosecution claims he was banned from campus for threats), the school has otherwise been banned from releasing most other info.
Not all, though. For instance, the school is sharing what media outlets want -- and aren't going to get anytime soon.
Other institutions with which Holmes communicated aren't under a gag order, including the University of Illinois, which accepted Holmes's 2010 application for a neuroscience program he ultimately chose not to attend. In response to Freedom of Information Act inquiries from the News-Gazette, the school released a slew of documentation on view below, plus a photo showing him wearing dark glasses while posing near just such an animal. Here's a screen capture of the latter:
As we noted earlier this month, there's no explanation in the News-Gazette article regarding whether the photo was related to any particular proposal, or if it was simply the equivalent of a non sequitur. But it definitely stuck in the memories of those at the university. An excerpt from the article:
Holmes visited the Urbana campus in March 2011 after he was unable to attend a February 2011 neuroscience open house. According to the UI documents, he met with several researchers while here. While arranging his itinerary, faculty and staff referred to him as "llama," in reference to a photo he submitted that showed him posing, grinning and wearing sunglasses, next to a llama.
Does CU have similar material in its archive? A slew of news organizations would like to find out, as is clear from a document listing media requests from the first couple of weeks after the July 20 Aurora theater shooting.
Outlets listed include the Associated Press, ABC, CBS, Fox News, NBC, CNN and more. Some of the requests are fairly general, including this one from the Wall Street Journal.
*Communications between faculty/admin/staff that mention Holmes 6/1/11 and 7/20/12 *Communications sent to/received by CU employees to/from Holmes *Disciplinary records re Holmes *Records documenting encounters between Mr. Holmes and CU law enforcement
Others are very specific. Take this, from 7News:
*CU e-mails with key words "James Holmes," "James Eagan Holmes," or "James E. Holmes" since 7/1/11 *E-mails sent/received from all Holmes e-mail accounts incl *JAMES.E.HOLMES@UCDenver.edu *JAMES.2.HOLMES@UCDenver.edu *James.JournalHolmes@UCDenver.edu *JamesNeuroSci.JournalHolmes@UCDenver.edu *Any other e-mail addresses used by Holmes
Judge William Sylvester has nixed such material from being made public at the present time -- although that hasn't stopped outlets from seeking out those willing to share details about incidents he's made off-limits. For instance, 7News quotes anonymous sources as saying that Dr. Lynne Fenton, ID'd as Holmes psychiatrist, discussed putting him on a mental health hold in June but ultimately decided not to do so.
Turns out that many of the public documents CU has been allowed to share on this page involve Fenton -- her employment file, her performance ratings going back to 2009, even the letter offering her a job. Also included are details about campus police procedures and the Behavioral Evaluation and Threat Assessment team, or BETA, which Fenton helped found.
Still, such material is likely only a tiny portion of the documentation the university has pertaining to Holmes -- data that will likely remain obscured from public scrutiny for months, if not years, much to the media's chagrin.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Westword's biggest stories.
- Is the Word "Marijuana" Offensive?
Wed., Dec. 9, 7:00pm
Wed., Dec. 9, 8:00pm
Fri., Dec. 11, 7:00pm
Fri., Dec. 11, 7:35pm
- Reader: I Can't Go Home for Two Years Over One Gram of Pot
- Ten Best Denver-Area Coffeehouses That Also Serve Liquor