FORT HOOD, Texas
The standby attorney for the soldier charged in the 2009 Fort Hood shooting rampage accused Maj. Nidal Hasan on Wednesday of deliberately charting a course toward a conviction and death sentence, abruptly halting the trial after only one day.
Lt. Col. Kris Poppe, Hasan's lead court-appointed standby attorney, said he is willing to step in and be Hasan's defense lawyer. But he asked that his responsibilities as co-counsel be minimized if Hasan, who is representing himself at trial, continues to work toward being executed.
It is "clear his goal is to remove impediments or obstacles to the death penalty and is working toward a death penalty," Poppe told the judge overseeing the case at the Texas military base.
Hasan responded: "I object. That's a twist of the facts."