Jury sentences Hasan to death for Fort Hood rampage
US army psychiatrist admitted shooting to kill
An undated handout photo of Nidal Malik Hasan, the Army psychiatrist who killed and wounded dozens of unarmed soldiers at a medical deployment center at Fort Hood in Texas in 2009.
Nidal Malik Hasan, the US army psychiatrist who admitted shooting to kill in a Fort Hood building packed with unarmed soldiers nearly four years ago, once said he wished he had died in the attack so he could become a Muslim martyr. On Wednesday, after deliberating little more than two hours, a jury of army combat veterans and senior officers granted him his wish, sentencing him to death by lethal injection for killing or wounding more than 40 soldiers on November 5th, 2009.
The same jury had found Hasan guilty last Friday of 45 counts of murder and attempted murder in a shooting rampage that a senate report called the deadliest act of terrorism on US soil since September 11th, 2001.
His desire for martyrdom appeared to weigh on the military jury. The sentence suggested that the jury agreed with the army’s lead prosecutor, Col Michael Mulligan, who told them earlier in the morning in his closing argument that Hasan was not and never would be a martyr.
Driven by a hatred of US military action in the Muslim world and a desire to protect Taliban leaders in Afghanistan, Hasan turned on troops wearing the same camouflage uniform as his own, using his laser-sighted semi-automatic pistol to target soldiers but avoid civilians. Firing 146 rounds at men and women as they crawled on the floor or crouched behind desks and cubicles, he killed 12 soldiers and a civilian who lunged at him with a chair.