A military jury panel has sentenced Maj. Nidal Hasan to death. The jury found the former Army psychiatrist guilty last week of 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder.
The 13-member jury deliberated for a little less than two hours before coming back with the sentence.
Hasan’s case will be automatically appealed.
The sentence is the culmination of more than three years of legal proceedings in the case. Hasan walked on to the Fort Hood Army Post on Nov. 5, 2009 with what he later told investigators was intent to kill U.S. soldiers who were to deploy to Afghanistan.
During his court martial, Hasan said he focused on killing military members and avoided civilians. Hasan shot and killed 13 people and injured more than 30 others in the attack. Hasan himself was shot and paralyzed during the incident. Though Hasan spoke to investigators about his actions and motivations, Judge Col. Tara Osborn told him that a “defense of others” argument, referring to his defense of the Taliban, was not a legal defense.
Instead, Hasan offered no arguments in his defense during the trial nor at sentencing. Soldiers who survived the attack and family members of those who died, meanwhile, offered heartfelt testimony about the trauma that still haunts them.
Though military courts have sentenced others to death, the military has not executed someone in more than 50 years. It’s unclear how long Hasan’s appeals process will take.