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Published On: Tue, Aug 20th, 2013

Judge in Fort Hood shooting trial rejects ‘copycat’ evidence and emails to Anwar Al-Awlaki from Nidal Hasan

Colonel Tara Osborn denied a number of key pieces of evidence prosecutors wanted to introduce as they tried to provide a motive for Major Nidal Hasan’s attack on Fort Hood in 2009.

That barred evidence included any reference to Hasan Akbar, a Muslim soldier who is now on death row for killing fellow soldiers in Kuwait in 2003. 

Nidal HasanProsecutors wanted to suggest Nidal Hasan carried out a “copycat” attack on Ft. Hood, but Judge Osborn ruled that information would “only open the door to a mini-trial” of Akbar and result in a “confusion of issues, unfair prejudice, waste of time and undo delay.”

The judge also ruled emails between Hasan and Anwar Al-Awlaki, a radical U.S. born Islamic cleric, could not be introduced as evidence.  But she did allow evidence about Internet searches on Hasan’s computer that included “Jihad”and websites he indicated were favorites.

Witnesses testified Monday they saw Nidal Hasan reloading a handgun outside the soldier readiness center on Ft. Hood, Nov. 5, 2009.  He told them “don’t worry, a training exercise is going on.”

Minutes later, 13 people were dead and 32 others were wounded. 

Also Monday, an FBI computer forensic examiner testified that Hasan had done Internet searches in January 2009 for “killing innocent Quran” and “killing of women and children Quran.”

Hasan did 10 searches for the term “Taliban” between Nov. 1 and Nov. 5, 2009, and also searched for terms like “jihad Muslims” and “Afghanistan Taliban” during that time, said Special Agent Charles Cox III.

Among the 86 pages marked as “favorites” on Hasan’s computer was a New York Times article with the headline, “A Call to Jihad, Answered in America,” Cox said.

But Hasan has kept mostly silent for two weeks as military prosecutors called more than 80 witnesses to testify about the attack on the Texas Army post, making whether he will take the witness stand in his own defense a key question for the remaining proceedings.

 

 

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About the Author

- Catherine "Kaye" Wonderhouse, a proud descendant of the Wunderhaus family is the Colorado Correspondent who will add more coverage, interviews and reports from this midwest area.

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