Colorado Theater Victim Families Question Fundraising - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Colorado Theater Victim Families Question Fundraising

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AURORA, Colo. (AP) - Families of some of the 12 people killed in the Colorado theater shooting are upset with the way the millions of dollars raised since the tragedy are being distributed.

They held an emotional news conference Tuesday in Aurora.

Tom Teves, whose son was killed, criticized fundraisers for not giving victims a voice in how the money is distributed, even though it was raised using the pictures and names of "our murdered loved ones."

So far, just over $5 million has been raised with $5,000 each going to the families of 70 victims to meet their immediate financial needs. However, $100,000 has gone to 10 nonprofit groups. No other money has been distributed yet.

Teves also questioned the commitment of Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper to helping the victims.

The suspect in the July 20 shooting, 24-year-old James Eagan Holmes, is charged with murder and attempted murder and two other counts.

Police said Holmes was heavily armed and wearing body armor and a gas mask when he opened fire on the audience in a packed theater in the Denver suburb of Aurora during a showing of the latest Batman movie.

In addition to the 12 killed, 58 were injured.

Holmes is being held without bail and has not entered a plea. Defense lawyers have said he is mentally ill.

Holmes was a first-year Ph.D. student in a neuroscience program at the University of Colorado, Denver. He told university officials about six weeks before the shootings that he was withdrawing.

Prosecutors have said Holmes failed an oral board exam June 7, at about the same time he began buying weapons and ammunition.

Prosecutors are seeking the university's records on Holmes and also want to see a notebook that Holmes reportedly sent to university psychiatrist Lynne Fenton. Fenton is expected to testify at a hearing Thursday.

Defense lawyers are fighting prosecution attempts to see the material.

Investigators, attorneys on both sides and the university have said little about the case outside court hearings, citing a gag order imposed by Arapahoe County District Judge William Sylvester.

Many court documents have been kept secret as well.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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