(Photo: Brigitte Woosley AP)
FORT HOOD, Texas - The second day of the court martial of Major Nidal Hasan, the radicalized Army psychiatrist accused of carrying out one of the deadliest gun attacks ever on a U.S. military base, is scheduled to start Wednesday in a Fort Hood courtroom.
Military prosecutors are expected to call more eyewitnesses to the Nov. 5, 2009, shooting rampage that left 13 people dead and more than 30 wounded. In his brief opening statement Tuesday, Hasan, who is representing himself, admitted to being the shooter and carrying out the attacks on behalf of the mujahideen, or holy warriors. An American-born Muslim, Hasan, 42, was scheduled to be deployed to Afghanistan a few weeks after the shooting.
Witnesses on Tuesday described the harrowing scene inside Building 42003 of the base's Soldier Readiness Center complex, when Hasan bellowed "Allahu akbar!" - "God is great" - and fired on unarmed soldiers using an FN 5.7 semiautomatic handgun.
Emptying and reloading high-capacity magazines, Hasan fired more than 200 rounds inside and outside the building, prosecutors said.
"He came to believe he had a jihad duty to kill as many soldiers as possible," Col. Steve Henricks, the lead prosecutor, said.
If convicted, Hasan faces the death penalty and could be the first person in five decades the military puts to death.