TUCSON - Jared Lee Loughner, 24, of Tucson, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Larry A. Burns in federal district court on charges stemming from the Jan. 8, 2011, shooting in Tucson in which he killed six people and wounded 13 others.
Loughner was sentenced to life in prison with no eligibility for parole.
"Today's sentence - life in prison without the possibility of release - means Jared Loughner will never again be free to hurt or menace the American public," said Attorney General Eric Holder. "For the victims, their families, and the larger community impacted by this tragic event in our nation's history, it is my sincere hope that this conclusion will help in their journey toward physical and emotional recovery. I want to express my gratitude to the many prosecutors and agents who worked on this matter for their outstanding service to our country and dedication to seeing justice prevail."
"We believe that Jared Loughner received the most appropriate sentence today and that justice has been done," said U.S. Attorney John S. Leonardo. "Today's sentence insures that Mr. Loughner will spend the rest of his life in prison and will never be in a position to harm others again. It is our hope that the conclusion of this case will finally bring some level of closure to the victims of this tragic event, to their families, and to the community at large."
"Today's sentencing of Jared Loughner, marks the end of the legal phase of this tragedy, but the victims and their families will forever be affected by the events of January 8, 2011. We will never forget those who lost their lives during that senseless tragedy," stated FBI Special Agent in Charge James L. Turgal Jr., Phoenix Division. "I would like to thank the United States Attorney's Office for their pursuit of justice in acquiring an appropriate sentence and the Pima County Sheriff's Office for working side-by-side with us on every aspect of the investigation. I would also like to thank all of our federal, state and local law enforcement partners for their tireless efforts in this case. These partnerships enabled the FBI to have a coordinated response which resulted in a comprehensive and thorough investigation-all which has led up to today's sentencing."
Loughner admitted during his change of plea hearing on August 7, 2012, that on January 8, 2011, he appeared at Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords' Congress on Your Corner event outside a Safeway grocery market in Tucson armed with a loaded semi-automatic pistol, with 93 rounds of ammunition, with the intent to murder Congresswoman Giffords and citizens attending her community event.
Loughner admitted that he shot Congresswoman Giffords in the head, and then fired his pistol at those at the event, killing six and wounding twelve other citizens, some seriously, including three Giffords' Tucson Office aides. Loughner fired a total of 33 bullets before being subdued and restrained.
Loughner pleaded guilty to 19 counts and one of the special findings of the superseding indictment handed down March 3, 2011, as follows:
The attempted assassination of Congresswoman Gabrielle D. Giffords;
The murders of federal employees U.S. District Court Chief Judge John M. Roll and Giffords' aide Gabriel M. Zimmerman;
The attempted murders of Giffords' aides Ronald S. Barber and Pamela K. Simon, who are federal employees;
Causing the deaths of Christina-Taylor Green, Dorothy J. Morris, Phyllis C. Schneck, and Dorwan C. Stoddard, all of whom were participants at the Congress on Your Corner event, which was a program provided by the United States of America;
Wounding Bill D. Badger, Kenneth W. Dorushka, James E. Fuller, Randy W. Gardner, Susan A. Hileman, George S. Morris, Mary C. Reed, Mavanell Stoddard, James L. Tucker, and Kenneth L. Veeder, Sr., all of whom were participants at that program;
Loughner also admitted that he knowingly created a grave risk of death to Carol A. Dorushka, Robert C. Gawlick, Patricia R. Maisch, Emma E. McMahon, Owen A. McMahon, Thomas J. McMahon, Faith M. Salzgeber, Roger D. Salzgeber, and Doris Tucker, and Giffords' aides Daniel Hernandez, Mark S. Kimble, Sara M. Rajca, and Alexander J. Villec because they were in his line of fire, but fortunately were not shot.
In total, Loughner was sentenced to seven consecutive life sentences, followed by 140 years in prison, for having committed these crimes.
The investigation in this case was conducted by the FBI and the Pima County Sheriff's Office. The prosecution was handled by Wallace H. Kleindienst and Mary Sue Feldmeier, Assistant U.S. Attorneys, District of Arizona, Tucson, with the assistance of Assistant U.S. Attorney C.J. Williams, Northern District of Iowa, who was detailed to the Capital Crimes Unit. Christina M. Cabanillas, Appellate Chief, and Bruce Ferg, Assistant U.S. Attorney, who serves in the Appellate Section, District of Arizona, Tucson.
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