Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, the suspected gunman in this week’s mass shooting in Boulder, Colo., will be held without bail, judge Thomas Mulvahill ruled Thursday.
Alissa’s lawyers asked to delay the next status hearing in the case for two to three months, saying “we cannot do anything until we are able to fully assess Mr. Alissa’s mental illness.”
“We cannot begin to assess the nature and depth of Mr. Alissa’s mental illness until we have the discovery from the government,” Kathryn Herold, one of his attorneys, said to Mulvahill. Herold, an attorney with the Colorado Public Defender’s Office, offered no additional details.
The judge granted the request and called for a recess after roughly six minutes. Alissa did not enter a plea, but will do so later in the judicial process.
The 21-year-old from Arvada, Colo., has been charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted first-degree murder for his alleged shooting rampage of a King Soopers grocery store.
According to the criminal complaint obtained by The Washington Post, authorities confirmed the attempted first-degree murder charge comes from an alleged attack on Boulder police officer Richard Steidell. Among the 10 people killed was Steidell’s colleague, Eric Talley, 51. As Steidell was combing the store during the shooting, he found Talley, who “was down, and appeared to be deceased,” according to the police affidavit.
His appearance in Boulder County court was the first time he had been seen in public since police arrested him outside the store, stripped to his shorts with blood from a gunshot wound rushing down one leg.
Police have yet to establish a motive in the shooting.
After entering the courtroom in a wheelchair shortly after 8 a.m. local time, Alissa spoke just once during his first appearance, acknowledging to Mulvahill that he understood he would be held in custody without bail.
Authorities found this week that Alissa purchased an AR-15-style weapon days before the shooting. The firearm would have fallen under an assault weapons ban that was recently overturned by a judge.
The tragedy in Boulder has renewed calls from officials for a ban on assault weapons, with President Joe Biden joining Colorado leaders in calling on Congress to act after the second mass shooting in a week. Vice President Kamala Harris echoed that push against assault weapons, saying this week, “The slaughters have to stop.”
The Boulder County district attorney’s office said in a news release that “additional charges would be filed in the weeks ahead.”
Later in the day, Boulder police revealed that Alissa was taken into custody at a hospital using a pair of handcuffs that belonged to Talley, saying it was “our distinct honor” to remember their fallen colleague as they booked the suspect into jail.
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The Washington Post’s Mark Berman contributed to this report.