CBS - A judge ruled that Jared Loughner is mentally competent to stand trial. Minutes later, Loughner pleaded guilty in the case.
TV cameras were not allowed in the court. Loughner appeared very different than he did in his booking photo - thinner, pale, and gaunt.
The judge asked Loughner if he understood the charges against him, and Loughner said, "Yes, I understand." it was the same judge who said last year that Loughner was incompetent to stand trial - but now he says Loughner is a different person.
Loughner sat still as a court appointed psychiatrist testified that Loughner told a doctor he was remorseful for what he did. She said Loughner told his doctor, quote, "I especially cry about the child" - apparently referring to nine year old victim Christina Taylor Green, who was killed in the attack.
Loughner's plea agreement takes the death penalty off the table. The 23 year old college dropout is now expected to get life in prison without parole.
Survivors of the shooting came to court, but former congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was not among them. Her husband, former astronaut Mark Kelly said he and his wife are satisfied with Loughner's plea agreement, and that avoiding a trial would help them and the rest of the community continue to recover from the attack.
Loughner smiled and nodded during testimony about his friendship with one of the prison guards.
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