22 Aug 2013

Fort Hood killer rests his case

9:05 am on 22 August 2013

The US soldier who killed 13 others at Fort Hood Army base in Texas in 2009 has rested his case without calling a single witness.

Major Nidal Hasan also declined to testify on his own behalf.

Military prosecutors concluded their case against Major Hasan, 42, on Wednesday after bringing forward 90 witnesses.

Only three were questioned by the accused, an Army psychiatrist who is conducting his own defence.

Major Hasan has said he carried out the attack to defend the Taliban in Afghanistan, but Judge Colonel Tara Osborn barred him from presenting that argument in court.

On Wednesday, she asked Major Hasan how he would like to proceed. He answered: "The defence rests."

The BBC reports the court will be in recess until Thursday morning after prosecutors asked for another day to prepare closing statements.

Major Hasan entered a medical building at Fort Hood on 5 November 2009, climbed on to a desk, shouted an Islamic benediction and opened fire with two guns.

According to the prosecution, he fired 146 bullets.