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Defense lawyer to ask Fort Hood CO not to pursue death penalty

Nidal Malik Hasan

AP

By Published: April 26, 2011

The lawyer for Fort Hood shooting suspect Maj. Nidal Hasan will meet with the post's new commander next month to ask him not to seek the death penalty for Hasan, The Associated Press reported.

A commanding general will decide what sentence the prosecution should pursue. Lt. Gen. Donald Campbell, who took command of Fort Hood last week, is expected to make the decision, although he could hand off the decision to another general, according to AP.

Hasan is charged with 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder in the November 2009 shootings. If the death penalty is taken off the table, he will be sentenced to life in prison without parole if convicted, AP reported.

Hasan's attorney told AP he's urging Campbell to consider all options because death-penalty cases are more expensive and because finding impartial jurors at Fort Hood could prove impossible. A court-martial by a panel of officers, rather than a military judge, would be required if the death penalty were a sentencing option. 

Read more about this story from The Associated Press