Tucson suspect indicted on new charges

PHOENIX (AP) - The suspect in the Tucson shootings that critically wounded U.S.Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was charged on new counts that include themurders of a federal judge and a congressional aide, according toan indictment released Friday.

A federal grand jury returned the 49-count indictment Thursday,charging Jared Lee Loughner in the deaths stemming from a Jan. 8shooting at a political event held by Giffords outside a grocerystore.

The latest indictment charged the 22-year-old Tucson man withmurder in the deaths of U.S. District Judge John Roll and Giffordsaide Gabe Zimmerman. Loughner also faces new charges of causingdeath to or injuring participants at a federally providedactivity.

Loughner had pleaded not guilty to earlier federal charges oftrying to assassinate Giffords and kill two of her aides.

His attorney, Judy Clarke, didn't immediately return a call ande-mail left at her office Friday.

Federal prosecutors haven't yet said whether they will seek thedeath penalty against Loughner. But legal experts believe it's avirtual certainty.

In all, 13 people were wounded and another six people, includinga 9-year-old girl, died in the attack.

Loughner also will likely face state charges in the attack, butwill be tried first in federal court before any prosecution beginson state charges. Federal and county prosecutors said federal lawrequires state prosecutions to be suspended while a federal case ispending.

Loughner is scheduled for a court hearing Wednesday inTucson.

A day after the shootings, prosecutors filed a complaint incourt charging Loughner with trying to assassinate Giffords,attempting to kill two of her aides and killing Roll and Zimmerman.Those charges were later replaced by federal indictments thatmirrored the same charges.

In many criminal cases, prosecutors will often file chargesthemselves without a grand jury indictment, but will later replacethose charges with an indictment.

It was not known why the charges against Loughner weren'tcontained in one indictment.

 

 


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