(FORT HOOD, Texas) — In emotional testimony, victims’ families told stories of how Major Nadal Hasan’s shooting rampage at Fort Hood has affected their lives. The penalty phase of the former Army psychiatrist’s trial began Monday. Military jurors are considering whether to sentence Hasan to death for the 2009 shootings that left 13 people dead.
“I feel dead but alive. He was my other half, my best friend, my husband and the father of my kids,” said Shoua Her, the widow of 23-year-old PFC Kham Xiong. “My daughter will not have her dad to walk her down the aisle.”
Many of the victims’ relatives spoke of depression and suicide attempts, and how they are in financial ruin. Angela Rivera, widow of 52-year-old father of five Major Eduardo Caraveo, described watching her 14-year-old daughter psychologically deteriorate after her husband’s murder.
“She cut herself and she said, ‘Mom, life is not worth living anymore.’ She said the pain is just too much and ‘I don’t want to be here anymore,'” Rivera told the jurors.
Once the prosecution is finished with its case, it will then go to Hasan, who is continuing to represent himself. Hasan is not expected to call any witnesses in this case, but he has the option to make a statement either sworn or unsworn, and most expect that he will speak.
For Hasan to receive the death penalty, the panel’s decision must be unanimous.
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