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James Holmes - The Psychology of a Killer

Updated on July 22, 2012
James Holmes  globalgrind.com
James Holmes globalgrind.com

Over the last few days we have seen terrible scenes on the evening news concerning James Holmes the fresh faced young man with only a speeding ticket to his name. So what makes people suddenly turn from a normal male adult to crazed murderer?

I have studied psychology for a number of years, and the one thing that we were always taught was that there is a fine line between a cold blooded killer and a person with mental problems.

If you think psychologists can tell the difference then you are wrong. Sometimes its obvious, but other times it takes a lot of evaluation to even begin to understand why they did it. In the case of James Holmes, my first reaction to seeing the whole thing unfold was, "Evil man, who did he think he was? The Joker?!"

Those are the exact words I said to my family when watching the terrible news on TV. Does this mean I can read him like a book? No of course not. My theories are purely based on what I believe may have triggered these alwful killings. Whether right or wrong we will have to wait and see.

James Holmes taking on the persona of the Joker. independent.ie
James Holmes taking on the persona of the Joker. independent.ie

Neuroscience Doctoral Student

As we now know, James was a neuroscience doctoral student. In plain English he studied and learned about the brain, which is ironic considering he turned into a killer. The old saying, physician heal thyself obviously doesn't work in this case.

Psychological Profile

So does he fit the typical profile of a killer? Well yes, in one way he is the typical introvert, who has followed in the footsteps of his father. But not all introverts are murderers. Locally he is known affectionately as Jimmy. But if we look closer we can see that he is just trying to emulate his father.

But after taking a look at Robert Holmes CV we can see that James has a lot to live up too. Robert has a doctorate in statistics and a degree in bio statistics, and even a bachelors in mathematics.

James Holmes has excelled in his studies right up until this year, when they plunged to such a low that he told fellow students he was going to drop out. Was this because he had already decided to kill? Or did he realise that he would never be as good as his father?

No, of course not. There is much more to it than that. I believe that James has always had a psychological disorder, with a Walter Mitty existence. An introvert who lives in a dream world, but looks perfectly normal to the outside world.

When his mother was interviewed she stated "You've got the right person".So it seems as though his psychological disorder was known to the family. Behind closed doors, the family unit was not quite as stable as the public face shown to the world.

Psychological Timeline

There was not one particular incident that set him on his killing spree, but a series of small things that either made him angry, or drove him into his dream world state. My first thoughts were:

  • He grew up reading Batman and acted out scenarios in his bedroom.
  • Something in one of the comic books caught his attention, maybe even years ago. The particular murder in the cinema episode from the 1980s. As talked about on the News.
  • He believes he was pushed into studying a subject that was his fathers choice and not his.
  • As the world of academia sucked him in, he began to live more and more in his fantasy world.
  • Possible desire to be an actor, or someone artistic. Believed that he was better than the actors on screen, and felt that he should have the fame.
  • It was his way of escaping from the life that had been chosen for him by his parents. His world of fantasy had slipped into reality.
  • Depression, drug addiction and disociation.

These points are obviously only my opinion, but I am sure a couple of them will prove to be true. I think this particular killer lived in a world of murder, evil and power probably delivered by online video games, DVDs and films. He was rebelling not against society, but against all the parental control that he hated. In his mind he wanted to be an actor, or prove his worth by using his hands in a manual job, not his brain. This combination of childish dreams, augmented reality and most of all being pushed in a direction that he didn't want to go, culminated in James Holmes turning into a cold blooded killer.

Depression, anxiety and possible drug exposure is also suggested as a trigger that tipped the balance between reality and fantasy.

In the last few days before the murder, James dyed his hair a bright orange color. This is a classic example of someone taking hold and embracing the new personality, therefore leaving behind the introverted boy. Classic dissociative disorder. By letting go of the old James and embracing the new, or in this case the Joker, James will place the blame on the Joker and see himself as totally innocent. Whether he really believes that or not is in question.

There are no excuses for taking someones life. But there should be blame passed on to other members of his family who did not see, or chose to ignore the pressure that he may have been under. What was it that his mother knew about his personality, that made her so certain the police have the right killer?

Is this a case of his father living his life again through his son? Maybe, but that doesn't change the fact that James Holmes will always be known as the Batman Murderer.

copyright nell rose

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    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Hi Hubert, thanks so much, yes you could well be right there, why they do it we will never know, but fame must come into it, at least the guy who killed John Lennon admitted that, thanks!

    • profile image

      Hubert Williams 4 years ago

      Nell, you aroused my curiosity with this article. I was happily semi ignorant of this case, except for the occasional headline in my news reader. I was not even aware of his name. I don't pay attention to mass murders anymore, there have been so many. Frankly, I feel that a rivalry has been born among the people who conceive these murders. A rivalry that has been fueled by the press who keep adding coal to the burner. That is my uneducated opinion, of course. I am not sure that I would even want to peruse the thoughts from a mind of such a person as described in this article, but I found this article very interesting. It made me, at least, look into the incident a little further.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Yes Tom I do have a degree in psychology. and the one thing we did learn was that to catagorise someone completely is wrong. So many overlap psychosis. As you said you are not qualified. your opinion is your own, and even though you are not trained you seem to think you know it better than me. The fact is you can be trained for years, but most of the time we never really know why someone does this kind of thing, and that's the secret. Most of it is guesswork mixed with what we have learned, bit like groping around in the dark. If you had taken the degree you would have known that. But thanks for your opinion.

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      Tom 4 years ago

      Do you have a degree in psychology? For disclosure, I do not, but I think you make a number of erroneous assertions in this piece.

      Further, there seems to be an air of ill-founded authority as to his mental state. Have you interviewed Mr. Holmes?

      Also irritating is your conflation of introversion with a so-called "killer" mindset. It is well known that the disorders that are associated with murderers, spree killers, serial killers etc. are malignant narcissism, antisocial and dissocial personality disorder, psychopathy and sociopathy.

      One trait central to these disorders, as far as I am aware, is the level of innate cortical arousal. The disorder you are hinting at is none of the aforementioned; you are obliquely referring to schizoid personality disorder, which is characterised by a proneness to introspection and fantasy, in addition to poor motivation and social isolation.

      Such individuals do not need to act out as they are stimulated internally, unlike the narcissist, psychopath and sociopath.

      In fact, extroversion correlates with social dominance orientation and psychopathy and narcissism. Your portrait of the typical loner who loses it one day is quite antiquated, it is no more than a trope confined to B grade exploitation films.

      I hope this link will be illustrative in some manner.

      http://shy-in-the-firelight.com/psychopathaspd.htm

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Thanks Paula, I totally understand your point, I think when someone is sane, we try to find explanations for why someone who is obviously insane do something like this. sometimes people live in a dream world, literally I mean, and don't realise what they do is real, on the other hand others have a crystal clear clarity of the evil they do, it will be interesting to see which category this man fits into, I did see on tv a while ago that they stated they were going to keep this under raps and not publicise it, so he won't get the fame he obviously wants, good for them, thanks as always, nell

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Nell... I am so glad that your hub has been circulated again, since I obviously missed this the first time around. Your take on this tragedy is very thoughtful and well-written, Nell. Kudos to you for your sound opinions.

      From the very beginning of time and I'm afraid, until the last moment this world should cease to be.....there have, are and will always be, the abnormal, mentally damaged, and if you will, freak-type-human beings. The mind is an enormously complex world of endless dimensions. Even today, it is believed and rightly so, man has basically "scratched the surface" in truly understanding even a small part of the vast vault of knowledge of this mysterious organ that controls our every thought, word, movement, & deed...both voluntary and involuntary.

      In short and simply stated......the human brain/mind....in terms of what we know and do know as yet...is literally mind-boggling. As ironic as this may seem, it is pure, unadulterated fact.

      I read each and every comment carefully...and even here, with the group who has responded to your hub.....this young man, his egregious action, has managed to create a myriad of "possibilities," explanations, opinions......normal people attempting to understand what caused an abnormal person to do, that may not be understood at all, in the end.

      I should stop now, or I will commit the crime of taking too much time and space. I don't want to, Nell, but I continually must remind myself that I am RETIRED!!! Thank you for your awesome thoughts....UP+++

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Thanks ImKarn, I wrote this just after the awful event. I haven't seen anything on tv about it since, as I live in England I thought maybe they were just keeping it local, thanks for the share, nell

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 4 years ago

      narcissist,megalomaniac, spoiled rotten - if i might add!

      This topic of mass murder/ers interests me greatly from the psychological standpoint..

      i'm pretty sure his mommy knew her little boy was all fucked up - just like the psychologist at the university - who wiped her hands of him when he dropped out of school..

      how about a little pro-activity? very hard when the police say: we can't do anything if they've done nothing. Every sign under the sun could be there and he could certainly be institutionalized for 72 hours for observation - but - as usual...nothing ever happens until scores of folks are dead..

      let's not look at those gun laws - NO - the founding fathers, and all..

      come ON now people

      great hub Nell..

      sharing..

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Hi Learn, thanks for reading and your points, nell

    • Learn Things Web profile image

      Learn Things Web 4 years ago from California

      This is a very interesting analysis. Parents should give their kids freedom to be whatever they want. I think pressure to do something you don't want to do can push an already psychologically vulnerable person over the edge. It will be interesting to see what comes out at his trial.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Hi Pamela, this story was all over the news recently, especially in America, he was a really evil man, but was he mad? I don't believe they really know just yet, thanks so much for reading, nell

    • Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

      Pamela Kinnaird W 4 years ago from Maui and Arizona

      I hadn't heard of this man and his crimes until reading your hub just now. I will be reading up on him via computer. But just from the hub's information, my mind says sociopath and possibly narcissism -- which always have roots in childhood. But that's just my first impression. Voting up.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Thanks so much for reading DDE, nell

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 5 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Such a psycho he is merciless to have taken the lives of people from their families

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi HubTub, thanks so much for reading, nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi HubTub, thanks so much for reading, nell

    • profile image

      HubTub 5 years ago

      Very interesting analysis of JH (I refuse to acknowledge his name) and a wonderful read. One of the main points you made that I found to be quite disturbing is the very fine line between someone having a mental illness and also having the propensity to be a cold-blooded killer. With millions of people suffering from one form of mental illness or another, I guess you never know when someone could snap. Obviously, in the case of JH, the consequences were devastating.

      Voted up + more and sharing!

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Thanks everyone for reading, I am a bit behind tonight so I will be back tomorrow. I will just say that since writing this, a few other things have come out about him and yes I do tend to agree with you all. There is much more behind it, and maybe at the end of the day he really does not have any excuses, or reasons to believe his father was pushing him etc, maybe he really is just psychotic. I wrote this just after it happened reading all the stuff in the newspapers it seemed to be the right answer at the time. but as I said it was just my opinion. After studying psychology for years, we were told that most people, however 'mad' or psychotic, usually have a 'reason' for doing these sort of things. whether the reason is valid or not, in their mind it is. It will be interesting to see what comes out of it, or whether they ever get to the real reason. At the end of the day we must just think of the poor people it happened too, they are the victims, and its so sad. Thanks for reading, nell

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      Ritambhara Om 5 years ago

      heart breaking .....but no one is responsible for this what happened. A normal quite person don't know that what type of circumstances, pressures and anxiety can turn him in to an abnormal depressive person. It can happen to anyone. Control is not in your hands. When we are in extreme tension, we react in a very strange way. We surprise about our behaviors that how can we do that after doing strange deeds. Anxiety, tension, family issues and some emotional unsolved puzzles affect my close friend's behavior too. She try to divert herself completely towards net surfing, watching English movies and dramas, and writing poems. She is still waiting for time to change in a positive way and her wait is still continue. Sometimes she feels to give up on herself. Her anxiety leads her to sleeping disorder. It is regular for her to wake up once in her sleep with extreme fear and confused state of mind. It takes half an hour for her to be normal. In that state she find herself with negative energy to face society. But she think that her God is still with her that's why she is not totally broken and still struggling. When someone will come in her life as a lifelong partner she will be fine. I will share her psychological problem in one of my hub. I don't know why I am telling you all this. Perhaps I think he himself is not responsible for this mishap. Every broken social issues, broken family problem will harm ultimately to society no matter who will be the victim. For nature there is no division among human beings. So we should take care every person in family, every individual in society otherwise any problem social, economical, psychological etc. will destroy society itself.

    • emilybee profile image

      emilybee 5 years ago

      Great analysis, Nell. I think it's just too sad how certain people get affected by things differently than others. Others watch similar films and see them as entertaining, and nothing more than that. It's almost like these films get ruined for everyone else because some people take it to the limit and can't view it as only entertainment. I saw the film the same weekend of the tragedy and I'll admit it ruined my experience. The complete aura of the movie theatre was darkened. Our lives shouldn't be on the line to view a film, but some take their entertainment too far and change the experience for others.

    • profile image

      KDuBarry03 5 years ago

      I recently just watched a show where two main characters suffered terrible events and, in order to help them cope, they created new personalities and those new personalities were dominating them. As you said, dissociative disorder. I do have to give some blame to the parents for forcing too much onto him. I wonder what would have happened if he didn't go to school for neuroscience...

      Over all, great hub, Nell! Voted up and sharing!

    • rcrumple profile image

      Rich 5 years ago from Kentucky

      Nell,

      I love your work, as you know, and think you're one of the best people around. Unfortunately, I'm in the opposite corner on this one.

      Since the original statement by his mother was made, it has come out that it was taken out of context. Supposedly, his mother, when asked if she was the mother of Holmes said, "Yes, you've got the right person" in acknowledgement that she was his mother, not that he was guilty.

      My major in college was Forensic Studies with Psychology as a minor. (That's why I'm here on Hubpages, lol) As much as I'd like to dissect and say this is the reason and such, I don't want to. Why? Because, I truly believe with every validation of "why", we are giving validation to the next one in line that is going through parallel similarities. Each instant seems to be a little better planned in all aspects than the previous. It's almost as though there's a course for would be mass killers!

      I've gone back to the side that concentrates on the horror of the crime, instead of the killer's side of why. Perhaps, if the horror is the aspect that is highlighted, the validation will be replaced with some recognition of what is acceptable behavior, and what it not. There are too many tears that are missed by the media and too much empathy for those who cause them.

      Let's agree to disagree here! I think you did an excellent job of presenting and obviously a great amount of time when into preparing this. You need be congratulated on your efforts! Up & Interesting!

    • Ruchi Urvashi profile image

      Ruchi Urvashi 5 years ago from Singapore

      Good and informative hub. I think that the exposure to violent movies and easy access to guns plays a big part. Yes, family unit is very critical and important factor too.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Thanks ImKarn, I am so sorry that happened to you, and you are right there really is no excuse for doing this, the one thing about England is that we don't have guns, well, the bad guys do sometimes but the general population don't, I believe that this keeps it out of the sickos hands as much as possible, but I agree that video games, dvds etc are one of the main reason for more violence these days, if a child is brought up looking at them then what are they supposed to think? the games people and dvd suppliers have a lot to answer for, thanks for reading, cheers nell

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 5 years ago

      Ah, Nell, i too share your love for psychology - and agree with most if not all of your educated assumptions/conclusions. Just to take your theory that he realized he would never legitimately best his father one step further: It will certainly be HIM and not Daddy going down in history, won't it now?

      Fame, fortune, notoriety AND a place in the history books?

      Let's see Daddy-o beat that!

      On the other hand, i was unwanted(my father pushed my mother down the front steps when she came home with another daughter ..). I watched abuse as i grew up, was abused..very poor. i left home at 14, had no support system, blahblahblah . AND - i love animals and pick garbage up off the street...

      People make choices...some even choose to be crazy..

      Shoot-em-dead is becoming a popular 'fall-back' plan to get out of just about anything some spoiled narcissist doesn't relish in life!

      Now, let's factor in that it's easier to get guns than slurpees in some states, and those always vicious, murderous, soul-less kiddie video games - and all i can say is....DUCK! Great hub on a sick topic...excuse the pun..

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi Mazzy, yes I agree, and thanks for reading, nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      hi ptosis, yes you are probably right there, thanks again, nell

    • Mazzy Bolero profile image

      Mazzy Bolero 5 years ago from the U.K.

      Just a point re monard's coment. Sandra Barr's blog is not only too bizarre but too unsupported by any genuine evidence. Some things she presents as evidence are incorrect. For instance, she claims the University of Cambridge owns the O2 Arena in Greenwich, which is to be used for some indoor Olympic events, and considers this to be of ominous significance. In fact Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) has a long lease on that building and the landlords are Meridian Delta Dome Limited. I don't mind people coming up with a story, but so often the "facts" they produce to support it aren't facts at all. For a conspiracy theory to be taken seriously, there has to be supporting evidence and it all has to check out.

    • ptosis profile image

      ptosis 5 years ago from Arizona

      If Gabby was on Arizona medicaid - sadly, she would probably be in the same state.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi ptosis, I tried the link but it said it wasn't there, never mind, yes Gabby Giffords is amazing, and I agree with you about other people with TBI not getting the same treatment as Congressmen etc, I have a friend who's son is in hospital with it, he will never come out as he is in a permanent 'vegetative state'. its such a shame, I think they look after him well, but I am sure there is other things they can do, thanks for coming back, nell

    • ptosis profile image

      ptosis 5 years ago from Arizona

      I've researched it and this is what I found out about the subject that Holmes gave a presentation about: 'microRNA biomarkers as indicators of neurological disorders', that means a blood test for things such as TBI, Traumatic Brain Injury.

      All I know is that Gabby Giffords who got shot in the head is testimony to the power of modern miracles . I am so happy for her, yet so sad for all the others with TBI who don't get the healthcare coverage that Congressman have reserved for themselves.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Thanks for the added information ptosis, I will go look at the link.

    • ptosis profile image

      ptosis 5 years ago from Arizona

      Holmes school: "... the Anschutz Medical Campus dedicated to neuroscience, studying such topics as how the brain works or malfunctions or helping develop drugs to treat epilepsy and other disorders.

      But it is not behavioral science or psychology," - http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/national_world&id=8748335

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Thanks monard, we will have to wait and see, that's if the real truth is ever revealed, but I think it will be one of those things that will go on for a long time yet, and then he will end up in jail for a very long time. There was another incident as well according to the news? I haven't caught who or what yet, but it seems to be another one.

    • monard profile image

      monard 5 years ago

      Conspiracy theory label aside, there had to be 'reason,' which seemingly stems from the connection between the alleged shooter and his father, who was (as you know) to release information on the LIBOR scandal. So much we don't know, and probably never will. Thanks for a good read, nonetheless.

      http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_21126462/real-li...

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi monard, no sorry I don't believe that one. Where on earth did that one come from? we all saw the news, heard the people talking about it etc, too much pain and grief to be faked, I think conspiracy theories will always abound when something like this happens, but there has to be a reason for a conspiracy theory and I can't think of one for this, its just downright murder, he was evil and that's that I think, unless you can tell me different? lol!

    • monard profile image

      monard 5 years ago

      Sorry about the dup post. I didn't think the frist "news617_batmanshoh" link posted.

      Anyway, here's some more interesting info - truth or fiction, I just don't know. But, if true, the conclusion drawn leans toward there not being a shooting - all staged.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Thanks monard for your thoughts, I will go and read Sandra's blog to see what she has to say. Yes it's a very complicated thing going on here, we will have to wait and see. Thanks, nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Thanks ptosis, I totally understand how you feel, and of course we all have our own thoughts on the whole horrible situation. I know there was a little girl who was shot, but I read that the baby was fine, its so complicated and confused. And yes I agree, why would they bring a small baby to a showing? that was very weird! I will be over to read shortly and thanks again, nell

    • monard profile image

      monard 5 years ago

    • monard profile image

      monard 5 years ago

    • monard profile image

      monard 5 years ago

      So many questions:

      Why the red hair?

      Pre-arranged to get a phone call to let someone in?

      Was his dad threatened/warned before hand?

      Why was there no bomb squad at the apartment?

      He was 'kind' enough to tell the cops his apartment was rigged to kill?

      Where were the ambulances - victims taken to the hospital by cop cars?

      What about the emergency training drill (w/12 theater victims) being held nearby?

      Was the money from the LIBOR fraud used for the Olympics?

      What about the Aurora~Olympics connection?

      Was this, as some theorize, a planned human sacrifice - part of a ritual?

      (ref: Sandra Barr's blog - http://truthseeker444.blogspot.com/ - is this soooo bazaar as to not be believable?

    • ptosis profile image

      ptosis 5 years ago from Arizona

      Thank you all for not tearing me down. That's why I waited so long to publish a hub on this because it's just too emotional. When I first heard about it there was a report that a baby was shot point blank in the face. Yet I don't hear about it now, Looking back at it though, I didn't think to wonder - why would a person bring an infant to a midnight showing of a very loud movie? I call my hub State of Emergency because this will change security in our lives.

    • monard profile image

      monard 5 years ago

      Ptosis, thanks for adding your post. Conclusions were hastily made. Nothing this serious is as simple as it seems.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi ptosis, I appreciate your reading, and your new evidence. I had no idea about a second shooter?! this was just my thoughts on the days following the atrocity, there seems to be so much more going on than we first thought. I will go and read the latest news, thanks for the update and your added info.

    • ptosis profile image

      ptosis 5 years ago from Arizona

      I disagree with this hub on so many levels. "The mother of the suspected Colorado Massacre gunman was referring to herself—not her son—when she told a reporter he had the "right person" when asked about the shooting last week"

      Please re-read the transcript of that conversation.

      #2 Where did Holmes get $20k to buy all this tactical equipment?

      #3 Why was Holmes mug shot taken the same day as court appearance (note beard length)

      #4 His Dad is set to testify FICO bank Fraud - guess he's to busy for that

      #5 what about the second shooter?

      I don't like people perpetuating the prejudice that only a mental person could do this, "Anders Behring Brevik, Norway mass murderer, declared insane ..." A lone gunmen theory make a tidy answer doesn't it?

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Thanks lyric, it was just my thoughts, but it will be interesting to see what happens. I hope he doesn't get away with the madness twist, I hope he gets what he diserves, thanks nell

    • thelyricwriter profile image

      Richard Ricky Hale 5 years ago from West Virginia

      Nell, great diagnostics! This was quite impressive actually. This makes perfect sense Nell and you did a heck of job writing this article. So many little things can transpire for one to act out like he did. You just never know sometimes. It could be a recent event or something that happened years ago. You have did a great job explaining everything Nell. Voted up, useful, and interesting.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi Alastar, I just went to take a look, what the heck?! its like something out of a Dan Brown novel! and what's with that horse? evidently the guy who made it got killed by the ugly looking thing! scary stuff for an airport! thanks I didn't know about that, I will go and read it further, nell

    • Alastar Packer profile image

      Alastar Packer 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Good breakdown on the shooter Nell. Mass killings of the recent past over here like Columbine, McVeigh etc all have mysterious questions in their backgrounds and all the killers had or were on psychotropics. It'll be very intriguing as the backstory comes out on this one more and more. As an aside: search Denver airport murals sometime. Not saying its connected to this horrible action but is similar in ways.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi sgbrown, Yes I am sure his mother knew what was going on, I suppose she wasn't sure exactly where it was going to lead, its so awful, I am still so shocked over the whole thing, God bless all of those who were killed, nell

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi angel, yes I had heard about her too, and wondered what the hell was going on, I couldn't believe that she got caught up in this one after going through something similar a month before. My curiosity got the better of me after reading your comment, and I have just tracked down her story. and this is where the whole thing gets so weird its unbelievable. Evidently she had written a blog after the event, and stupidly I just read it. I has been regarded as one of the most chilling things to come out of the whole mess. Please be aware that I cried like a baby when I read it, it is totally and completely heartbreaking.

      http://jessicaredfield.wordpress.com/2012/06/05/la...

    • sgbrown profile image

      Sheila Brown 5 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

      What a horrible, horrible thing this was! No one knows for sure, what goes on in the mind of some people. I wonder how his mother feels. She knew there was something dangerous about him and yet, she did nothing to help him. My heart goes out to all the family and friends of the people who were injured and killed in this tragedy. Voted up and interesting.

    • Nell Rose profile image
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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi Gypsy, yes I totally agree, and I think that's what has shaken all of us, the fact that he could walk among everybody else and nobody spotted it. its just so chilling. What was the tipping point between his so called sanity and his evilness? makes me shudder to think, thanks so much for reading, cheers nell

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi John, that must have been terrible seeing it like that over there, it was bad enough in England, we were totally shocked. I know these sort of things have happened over there before but this just seemed much more real and awful, yes people like this can be so brainy it tips them over to madness, or on the other hand they could be clever and a sociopath. I am going to keep following the story and hopefully see the right outcome, thanks nell

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      Angel Ward 5 years ago from Galveston, TX

      I can't believe how few people realize a woman that escaped the Canada attack, a month before just "accidentally" got killed in this one. she was the same age too, sorry but this whole thing is set up with more than one involved. either someone was after her, or she was part of it and got shot by accident etc.... I really don't think she was, she was in media etc... there is way more to the story than mainstream media is letting on.... don't let them limit the truth, search deeper...

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi Victoria, I know what you mean, he just sickens me, as I wrote it I thought, is it a good idea? but it makes me get my head around it, if that is possible, so thanks so much I really appreciate it, nell

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Exactly PDX, we don't want to watch, but its so compelling we can't help it. I think its because we just want to get inside his head to see what the hell he is doing, why he is doing it and how he could live with it, thanks so much for reading, nell

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      Gypsy Rose Lee 5 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Interesting and fascinating hub. Obviously there is so much more to James than just losing a few screws. One seriously sick young man who has a lot to answer for but can he? Thanks for sharing.

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      John Sarkis 5 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Great hub Nell. As you probably know I'm from the states - California to be exact, and we just can't believe this happened. The entire weekend was news about this guy on TV and the horrendous crime he committed. Additionally, people always have a difficulty equating genius to crime, but there are lots of smart people who aren't right in the heart and their IQ's have little to do with it.

      Always a pleasure - voted up on your wonderful hub

      John

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      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      I had to work up to reading this. I couldn't do it right after it happened. I had watched a 20/20 special that made me so sick inside. Your insights are interesting and could be right on. I wonder about his mom, too. This is all so tragic. Thanks for sharing this.

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      Justin W Price 5 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Fascinating, Nell. People like him, even though they are terribly evil, are immensely interesting to study.

      up, shared, UI

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Thanks kitty, yes I heard that a baby was there. Where the heck are we supposed to go to be safe? you would have thought a cinema would be the best place in the world. I think everybody across the world will always feel a bit uncomfortable going into a cinema now, at least for a while, but it will always be at the back of their mind. hope he gets the death penalty, if he ends up in an asylum people are not going to be happy, thanks, nell

      my pc crashed and commented too many times! had to delete!

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      Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

      I feel so bad for the families and people involved in this awful situation. A 3 month old was there...did you know that? How horrible. Yes, I believe he did go crazy and was living in a dreamstate...it really makes me wonder. It also makes me scared to go to the movie theater! Not to say that it will happen again, but you never know with people...very interesting. Nell - I like your theories. You're one smart lady. :)

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi Sue, yes it certainly looks that way. I should imagine Arlene said those first words that you mentioned in your first comment to the reporter, but I believe she probably did say it in this context too. she was his mother and even if she didn't know exactly what he was going to do, I believe she must have sensed some change in him, thanks for coming back, nell

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      Sueswan 5 years ago

      Hi Nell,

      I looked into this further.

      Apparently ABC new spoke exclusively to Arlene Holmes and she did say that "You have the right person," she said, apparently speaking on gut instinct. "I need to call the police... I need to fly out to Colorado."

      But on Monday, a lawyer for the Holmes family read a statement by Arlene Holmes to the press, saying that she needed to "clarify" the comments attributed to her.

      It does make you wonder if this is just a cover up.

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi Sue, that's interesting, now did she say it to the reporter or is she trying to make excuses? I know I should feel sorry for James mother but I get the feeling that she must have known something was going on, maybe not? yes he may just be that, insane, perhaps we try to understand why someone does this type of thing because we believe 'there must be a reason' when really there is not. Thanks for letting me know about that, and for reading too, cheers nell

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      Sueswan 5 years ago

      Hi Nell,

      My heart felt prayers go out to the victims families.

      "When his mother was interviewed she stated "You've got the right person".So it seems as though his psychological disorder was known to the family."

      Perhaps, but I am not 100% sure after reading the following from the Huffington post.

      "I was awakened by a call from a reporter by ABC on July 20 about 5:45 in the morning. I did not know anything about a shooting in Aurora at that time. He asked if I was Arlene Holmes and if my son was James Holmes who lives in Aurora, Colorado. I answered yes, you have the right person. I was referring to myself.

      I asked him to tell me why he was calling and he told me about a shooting in Aurora. He asked for a comment. I told him I could not comment because I did not know if the person he was talking about was my son, and I would need to find out."

      I think some people are born evil or crazy. For those of us who are sane, it is hard to imagine how someone could commit such an act so we look for reasons.

      Voted up and interesting.

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi Maria, I sat and read your comment and I have no idea how to say how terrible that must have been, words can't even express them. When you are subjected to something so mind shattering as that I can understand totally what you mean about it doesn't matter what the reasons were behind it. I think the reason why I wrote this was because in my shocked and totally bewildered mind after seeing this on tv, I just felt that I had to try and get my head around it, to be honest I did think twice about writing it, but my hands just wanted to write it down to maybe explain it. I am so sorry for what happened to you, I won't even try to say I can understand because of course I can't, all I can say is thank you for your kind words about my hub, and hugs back ten times over, nell

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      Maria Jordan 5 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      Dear Nell,

      Your objective and informative approach in a matter that is so devastatingly objectionable on every level is most impressive.

      Having my life turned upside down in 1999 by a madman with a gun and watching a friend die before my eyes, it doesn't much matter what the reasons are behind the senseless acts to those innocent people involved.

      My prayers go out to each of the victims/ their families. Thank you for your sensitivity in this writing. Hugs, Maria

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      I totally agree alocsin, he's is going for the insane vote, it will be interesting to see when he cracks, then the truth will come out, or maybe he will keep it up, until the death sentence is said, then we may see a reaction. I have been watching it too, such a chilling look on his face, thanks for reading, nell

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      alocsin 5 years ago from Orange County, CA

      I saw his demeanor on the news today while he was seated in court. It's quite obvious to me, being in the acting profession, that he's trying to "act" a role -- most likely an insane person. If he were on my stage, I'd kick him off for being non-believable. I hope the judge will see through him as well.

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      As I stated in my article this is only my opinion, and I appreciated everybodys views on it.

      Rea Psych, I mentioned that there was a possibility that James may not have wanted to follow in his fathers footsteps, that is all. who knows what went on in their house? As you can see all over the news, his mother was fully aware of the fact that he was capable of this horrific act. But thank you for your opinion.

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi tills, thanks for reading, much appreciated. nell

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      Real Psych 5 years ago

      The idea that this man murdered people because of daddy issues is shortsighted, in Psychology we have come far from Freud's oedipal fantasies and it is a shame that people eat this up and still label it as Psychology.

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      Andy 5 years ago

      What a load of dribble.

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      pissedoffmeathead 5 years ago

      We should go back to throwing stones in the arena at the scum bags like this until "it" dies.

      I can't imagine what the families who died did to deserve this. There were just regular people with their own life, happiness, sadness etc just were so excited enough to watch this film asap.

      This nutbag walks in and kills them for no fuckking reasons. No one deserves this.

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      Mary Craig 5 years ago from New York

      Excellelnt hypothesis. So many things factor into this boy's insanity and I believe he had to be insane to want to kill that many people. I am impressed with your background and knowledge and believe as others have that you will be right on more than one count!

      Voted up, useful, and interesting.

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi christopher, yes he has become famous now, did you see what's happening on facebook? evidently he has a following already! how sick is that? it was in the Newspaper! I think in his case he can be called a murderer now as he was caught in the act, thanks as always, nell

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi teaches, that's interesting. Sitting here I tried to know how I feel about that, on the one hand I understand the mother not liking the batman association, but on the other hand I think from childs point of view, and in fact from hers too that was maybe overboard a bit. A child won't understand why his mother would stop him reading or playing as batman. The character is and has been the same for generations, it was a man who did the evil deed, I think that she is actually focusing on the wrong part of the action that's what I believe, what do you think? thanks nell

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi Euro, yes the families must be going through hell, If only we could know exactly why he did it, I do believe that a few of the general theories are true though, thanks for reading, cheers nell

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Thanks billy, this was just my perspective on it, I am sure we are going to find out soon, thanks!

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Thanks CriticalMessage, exactly true!

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi avian, yes you are right, and a film! thanks as always, nell

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      Christopher Antony Meade 5 years ago from Gillingham Kent. United Kingdom

      He certainly seems to have achieved one aim, that is to become famous, if that was what he wanted. He can't be labeled "a murderer" until after his trial however.

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      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      Thanks for bringing this to a level of understanding from a professional's point of view. It is a perplexing behavior that has made many take note of the implications of certain behavior. I was at a party store yesterday and a parent returned all the batman decorations because she didn't want her son to identify with the character. It makes you wonder if the parents could have done something to prevent the loss of identity of this sad individual.

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      Fotinoula Gypsyy 5 years ago from NYC BABY

      Yes you are right psychologists can't pinpoint disturbances sometimes, they are normal people after all and it all depends on what kind of training they received and where. This guy is obviously a crazy person that has no regard for human life, he deserves to suffer to pay for his actions. I feel very sorry for the families that suffered because of him.

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      There is no easily digested explanation of these killers. We have had our share of them here in the States. They may well be Evil for lack of a better medical explanation.

      Well done Nell; you handled a disturbing story quite well.

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      Murphy 5 years ago from Chicagoland, Illinois

      BEWARE OF WOLVES IN SHEEP'S CLOTHING !

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      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      We will have to see, as the evidence unfolds. Then a book will be written by someone.

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hey lord that was quick! lol! I would normally laugh, but didn't know whether it was appropriate on this one! lol! bit of light relief, thanks again, be over in a min!

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      Joseph De Cross 5 years ago

      Hahaha, was just kidding, same way they played with Jeffrey Dahmer

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi lord, personally I don't think he is insane, but just evil, but yes you got a good point there! lol!

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi tammy, yes it was just my take on it, we studied various types of people who have done this, and sometimes they follow a pattern, and another time it just comes out of the blue. I just wanted to try to get my head around it, its all over the news over here too, and chilled me to the bone, as the news comes out it does seem as though he is a cold blooded psychopath, after all the planning he did what other explanation can there be? we will see, but its so horrible, thanks as always, nell

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      Joseph De Cross 5 years ago

      I'm going to send bars of soaps to some immates, so they can test his insanity on the 'SPOT'

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      Tammy 5 years ago from North Carolina

      This is such a terrible act. I feel so bad for these families. I really think this guy thinks he is the Joker in some way. I think it will take a lot of time to anaylze this character. It really makes one stop and wonder how many people at this very minute are planning to do the same thing and we just can't see them. Excellent hub!

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi Ruby, yes the mother has a lot to answer for, I have just heard that he is going to plead insanity to avoid the death penalty, makes me so sick, thanks, and nice to see you, nell

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      Ruby Jean Fuller 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

      Nell, Your article is very educational. Your theory sounds like it could be. Whatever he was a sick person. What i can't understand, if the mother knew he was capable of committing this terrible act, why would she not notify the police? Cheers

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi josh, yes it was on the news last night. Evidently the police said that he probably read an 80s Batman comic book that mentioned the joker going into a cinema and shooting people, at least I think it was the joker, but a cinema was involved. Maybe this played on his mind over the years and it just stayed there until he decided to do it, thanks for reading josh, nell

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi Mazzy, yes that's it I think, he had to do something bad before they did anything, mind you, I do believe his mom knew what he was like as I mentioned above, she should have called the police or something, she must have realised he had bought all those guns, and was acting strange, thanks