The suspect in Saturday’s Tree of Life Synagogue shooting walked into a federal courtroom in Pittsburgh on Nov. 1 and pleaded not guilty to all 44 counts against him.
Robert Bowers, 46, who was released from the hospital three days ago after suffering multiple gunshot wounds during a shootout with police, walked into court in wrist, waist and ankle restraints as well as a large bandage on his upper left arm.
The case is set for a jury trial and could result in the death penalty. Bowers of Baldwin, Pa., was charged with 11 counts of obstruction of the free exercise of religious beliefs resulting in death and use of a firearm to commit murder during a crime of violence.
During the arraignment, Bowers responded “yes” that he understood the penalties of the charges, and his public defender, Michael J. Novara, entered a plea of not guilty, “as is typical,” he said.
“Every American has the right to attend their house of worship in safety,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement. “These alleged crimes are incomprehensibly evil and utterly repugnant to the values of this nation. Therefore this case is not only important to the victims and their loved ones, but to the city of Pittsburgh and the entire nation.”
Since the incident, families and members of the Jewish community in the city and around the nation rallied together to honor the victims of the massacre.
By: Maytinee Kramer