Gabrielle Giffords Tells Her Shooter She's 'Done Thinking About You'

PHOTO: Former Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, and her husband Mark Kelly leave after the sentencing of Jared Loughner, in back of U.S. District Court Nov. 8, 2012, in Tucson, Ariz.
Share
Copy

Former Arizona congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords looked in the eyes of the man who shot her today and, through her husband, said she is now "done thinking about you."

Giffords was sitting in the second row of the courtroom with her husband, ex-astronaut Mark Kelly and she stretched to get a better view of Jared Loughner when he entered the courtroom.

She later stood alongside her husband astronaut Mark Kelly to deliver a victim impact statement. She was one of several of Loughner's victims who spoke about the day when he opened fire at one of Giffords street corner meetings, killing six and injuring 13.

Speaking on her behalf, Kelly addressed Loughner and both and he and his wife, known as Gabby, faced Loughner. The formrer congresswoman has difficulty speaking and is partially paralyzed because of her head wound. To learn more about this story, including exclusive interviews with Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly, Click HERE.

"You may have put a bullet through her head, but you haven't put a dent in her spirit," Kelly told Loughner.

Kelly kept telling Loughner, "Jared, pay attention to this" during his statement.

"You tried to create for all of us a world as dark and evil as your own. But know this, and remember it always: You failed," Kelly said.

Following the sentencing hearing, Kelly gave an exclusive interview to ABC's Diane Sawyer, in which he said he and Giffords now had "some sense of resolution. Not exactly closure, but it is resolution."

Loughner, he said, was "a little defiant in the way looking at us and looking at Gabby. I got the sense he was trying to intimidate us, especially my wife."

Giffords stared into Loughner's eyes while her husband addressed the court.

"She stared into his eyes the entire time. I saw a person [Loughner] who certainly has major mental illness, but who knew where he was and why he was there," Kelly said.

Loughner, 24, was given seven life prison sentences without parole plus 140 years. He pleaded guilty in a deal that allowed him to avoid the possibility of a death sentence.

Click HERE, for Mark Kelly's full statement. Kelly saved some of his ire for Arizona's politicians calling their leadership "lacking" and Gov. Jan Brewer "feckless," for their refusal to address gun control. The state legislature, he said, named an official state hand gun just weeks after the shooting.

Before concluding his statement in court, Kelly also said to Loughner, "Know this, Gabby and I are done thinking about you."

Several other of Loughner's victims also gave emotional statements in court this morning about how Loughner's shooting spree impacted their lives.

"You pointed a weapon at me and shot me," Susie Hidelman, who was shot three times while trying to save her 9-year-old neighbor, told Loughner in court this morning. "I will walk out of this courtroom and into my life and I will not think of you again," she said.

Mavy Stoddard, who was shot three times and whose husband collapsed on top of her after being shot, said: "When you shot my precious husband Dorwans Stoddard, you ruined my life."

"Somehow, when you shot him, I got out from under him. ... I was screaming, 'Oh God, oh God, help me,'" she said. "I said to him, 'Breathe deeply,' and he did. Therefore, I believe that he heard me say, 'I love you.'"

"You took away my life my love my reason for living," she told a rapt courtroom.

Loughner chose not to speak at today's hearing. When asked by Judge Larry Burn if he understood he has a right to make a statement, Loughner responded "Yes, sir" in a long monotone.

Following the shooting, Loughner was diagnosed with schizophrenia and is under orders to forcibly receive anti-psychotic medication.

Many of the victims welcomed his decision to accept a federal plea bargain and avoid a lengthy trial. It remains unknown whether state prosecutors will try him anyway and seek the death penalty.

Loughner is currently being held at a prison medical facility in Missouri.

Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...