Today, the University of Colorado released about 3,800 e-mails related to accused Aurora theater shooter James Holmes, a neuroscience student at the school who had begun to withdraw more than a month before the July 20 attack. Most of the e-mails we've combed through are unremarkable, but some provide a window into how staff reacted in the immediate aftermath. Read several e-mails below, with more to come.
One e-mail sent on the morning of July 20 by Larry Hunter, a professor in the university's computational bioscience program, indicates Holmes had a "brief romantic relationship" with a graduate student in Hunter's program. Read it below:
The e-mails released also include some written by Holmes, like the one below:
Other e-mails shed light on how faculty and staff reacted to the news:
Continue reading for more e-mails about Holmes. The e-mails were produced in response to open-records requests by several media outlets, including Westword. CU searched its e-mail servers for the terms "James Holmes" and "James E. Holmes" and came up with 3,272 e-mails. Of those, CU has released nearly 2,300. The rest are protected because they're student records, health records or attorney-client privileged communications. See an example of a redacted e-mail below:
CU also reviewed Holmes's two university e-mail accounts and found approximately 2,700 e-mails. About 1,500 were released. In addition to weeding out e-mails the university considered privileged, CU is holding back one hundred e-mails that Holmes's attorneys assert are "personal and private" and not subject to open-records requests.
Many of the e-mails released from Holmes's accounts are essentially junk mail, including group e-mails about events or solicitations for study participants. See an example below:
After the shooting, the university received hundreds of requests for information from the media. Many of the released e-mails ask for interviews with faculty. The e-mails show that CU employees were instructed to forward all such requests to the university's media relations team. See below for an example of a professor who did just that:
And still other released e-mails are more cryptic, such as the one below between Jim Finster, the director of academic support services, and campus police officer Lynn Whitten. A court order issued in October indicates that Dr. Lynne Fenton, a psychiatrist who was seeing Holmes, admitted that she spoke with Whitten. Read the e-mail below:
More from our Aurora Theater Shooting archive: "CU releases some documents related to James Holmes, including a second ID photo."Follow me on Twitter @MelanieAsmar or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.